The Twelve Tribes of Hattie Symbols & Objects

Ayana Mathis
This Study Guide consists of approximately 44 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Twelve Tribes of Hattie.
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Jasmine

Jasmine is a fragrant, white flower. It represents love and joy. “Rotting jasmine” represents the ruin of young Floyd’s potential to find love and joy because of society’s rejection of homosexuality and his rejection of his own self.

mule

The mule is an animal bred for labor, hence symbolizes subservience. In the chapter about Ruthie, Lawrence says that he thinks that not being anybody’s mule is the most important thing in life and that he has accomplished that. His primary attraction to Hattie is that despite having so many children she has managed to stay her own independent person.

death by drowning

Death by drowning is symbolism for struggling with life. Hattie describes Jubilee and Philadelphia’s final moments as drowning, and with their death, her life takes shape as a constant struggle. Later, when she attempts a new beginning with Lawrence, she...

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This section contains 889 words
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Buy The Twelve Tribes of Hattie Study Guide
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