restricted access Anti-Exodus: Countermemory, Gender, Race, and Everyday Life in Toni Morrison's Paradise

This article examines the critique of communal politics of life in Paradise focusing upon the two tropes through which Morrison dramatizes the frictions of such politics. On the one hand, she re-invokes the Exodus-trope of African American national politics for her critique of Ruby's racist and patriarchal "covenant of life." On the other hand, she puts forward an Anti-Exodus trope through which, in her sections on the Convent women's practice of everyday life, Patricia Best's use of countermemory, and Piedade's songs, she explores some of the possibilities and risks of a cross-racial, women-centered, and transnational politics of life.