It is now a standard in college literature classes across the nation and has been translated for a readership stretching from Japan to Romania.
As a realist, she imitates what is real. The Southern dialect spoken by Taylor and Lou Ann is the dialect that Kingsolver remembers speaking while growing up in rural Kentucky. It is a dialect full of imagery that awakens the senses.
Years after leaving Kentucky and her native dialect behind, Kingsolver utilized the poetic and unique features of that dialect to give her characters substance and personality.
A dialect is a spoken version of a language. Dialects develop when people are separated or isolated from one another due to natural geographic barriers, such as mountain ranges, or social barriers, such as class. Prior to the development of motorized travel, which allows people to move about more easily, and mass communication technology, including telephones, communication among regional groups of people was practically nonexistent.
As a result, dialects are regional and often have distinct features of pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary. There are three general areas in the United States in which people speak different dialects. The eastern dialect is spoken in eastern New York and New England; the Southern dialect is spoken south of Pennsylvania and the Ohio River and Westward beyond the Mississippi into Texas; and the rest of the country speaks what is called a general American or Western dialect.
The Southern dialect that Taylor, Lou Ann, and their relatives speak includes figurative language that creates images that tell stories about simple, daily occurrences.
For example, when Taylor first meets Lou Ann, Lou Ann understands her perfectly when she says, "I'm just a plain hillbilly from East Jesus Nowhere with this adopted child that everybody keeps on telling me is dumb as a box of rocks. I've got nothing on you, girl. The rural Kentucky dialect spoken by characters in The Bean Trees accurately depicts the dialect spoken in that particular region of the United States.
Southern dialect is a tool that Kingsolver uses to realistically portray — at least to her — life lived by women from Kentucky.
Figurative Language Kingsolver's lyricism transforms settings, scenes, characters, and actions into patterns of imagery, indirectly appealing to her readers' senses. The imagery in her prose is as vivid as the imagery found in poetry. Kingsolver makes use of figurative language — language that is taken figuratively as well as literally — to write a lyrical novel.
In The Bean Trees, figurative language includes metaphors and similes. Metaphors compare two unlike things without using words of comparison like or as. In the novel, for example, when Taylor and Turtle are nearing Tucson, it begins to hail and the roads are covered with ice.
Traffic is slow, and Kingsolver describes the pace as being "about the speed of a government check. The card compares a man's helpfulness around the house to that of a pipe wrench.
Kingsolver also relies on her extensive background in biology to include natural history metaphors. She compares the "thick, muscly [wisteria] vines" as they come out of the ground to "the arms of this guy who'd delivered Mattie's new refrigerator by himself.
At the beginning of the novel, Taylor relates how Newt Hardbine's daddy was thrown over the top of a Standard Oil sign "like some overalls slung over a fence"; she gives her new little Cherokee child the name Turtle because the girl is "like a mud turtle"; and later, while Taylor is getting her tires checked at Jesus Is Lord Used Tires, she watches as Mattie "rubbed Ivory soap on the treads and then dunked them in [a tub of water] like big doughnuts.
Little threads of bubbles streamed up like strings of glass beads. It looked like a whole jewelry store in there. She writes that the tracks "at one time functioned as a kind of artery" and compares the once-busy railroad line to a blood vessel "carrying platelets to circulate through the [body's] lungs.
She refers to historical or famous people, objects, and events to suggest more than what she is saying. Examples of Kingsolver's allusions include: Taylor's mother always told her that trading Foster, Taylor's father, for her "was the best deal this side of the Jackson Purchase.
Symbolism Symbols in The Bean Trees enrich the themes found in the novel and, oftentimes, suggest Kingsolver's extensive background in biology. A symbol functions literally as a concrete object and figuratively as a representation of an idea.
Symbols allow writers to compress complicated ideas or views into an image or word.
Some symbols, such as a dove as a representation of peace or winter as a representation of death, are well known; they are called public symbols. Many times, writers invent their own symbols. When Kingsolver creates symbols, she has her own definite meanings for the symbols.
However, because each symbol has a myriad of interpretations, she prefers that her readers interpret the symbolism as it relates to their own life experiences.The Bean Trees | The Bean Trees is a book readers have taken to their hearts.
It is now a standard in college literature classes across the nation and has been translated for a readership stretching from Japan to Romania. When it was first published, however, its author was unknown. The Bean Trees is a novel by Barbara Kingsolver that was first published in Barbara Kingsolver wrote The Bean Trees in shifting points of kaja-net.com but two chapters of the novel are written in the first person, revealing the thoughts and feelings of the feisty protagonist, Taylor Greer.
— Barbara Kingsolver The writing of fiction is a dance between truth and invention. What keeps me awake at the wheel is the thrill of trying .
This essay presents literary context on Barbara Kingsolver's novel "The Bean Trees." The essay provides a plot summary of the novel and contextualizes the content through an exploration of historical, religious, scientific & technological, societal .
She is the author of seven works of fiction, including the novels The Lacuna, The Poisonwood Bible, Animal Dreams, and The Bean Trees, as well as books of poetry, essays, and creative nonfiction.