Milkman's Transformation in Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon
Milkman experiences many changes in behavior throughout the novel Song of Solomon. Until his early thirties most would consider him self centered, or even self-loathing. Until his maturity he is spoiled by his mother Ruth and sisters Lena and Corinthian because he is a male. He is considered wealthy for the neighborhood he grew up in and he doesn't socialize because of this.
As a result of his spoiled childhood Milkman takes women for granted. He doesn't consider how his actions affect them. This is shown when he realizes he is bored with his cousin Hagar, whom he has been using for his sexual pleasure for years. Instead of buying her a Christmas gift he gives her cash and a thank you note. He thanks her for everything she has done for him and considers the relationship over. Hagar becomes obsessed with killing Milkman. She makes several attempts to take his life but fails because of her love for him. Her last attempt to kill him is when he is hiding from her in his only friend, Guitar?s room. Hagar tries to stab him but after she sees his face she cannot. Milkman tells her to stab herself and says, ?Why don?t you do that? Then all your problems will be over.?[pg 130] This portrays how Milkman is cold hearted towards the opposite sex.
Milkman?s journey into manhood begins when he is in his thirties. He has been thriving for financial independence since he began working for his father. He also wants to escape from his family ties. Milkman and Guitar steal a bag of what they believe is gold from his aunt Pilate?s house. They are arrested and find only human bones and rocks not gold in the bag, which essentially destroys his sense of flight. His father Macon and aunt Pilate go to the jail to get them released. Pilate performed an aunt Jemima act to assist in their release. Guitar is ashamed of her act but Milkman feels honored ?but the fact that she was both...