Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Character Guide: Stamp Paid

Stamp Paid made a serious sacrifice during his enslavement that has caused him to consider his emotional and moral debts to be paid off for the rest of his life, which is why he decided to rename himself “Stamp Paid’’. He was called Joshua when he killed his wife ‘Vashti’.

‘‘Scuse me. You seen Vashti? My wife Vashti? […] Wear a black ribbon on her neck.’’ P.233

As an agent of the Underground Railroad, he helps Sethe to freedom and later saves Denver's life from her mother’s hands. He tells Paul D about ‘The Misery’ by showing him a newspaper clipping. When Stamp Paid hears that Paul D has left 124, he feels guilty for having told Paul D about Sethe's crime without considering her family's happiness.

And it was the lateness of this consideration that made him feel so bad. P 170.

For that reason, although he has a habit of walking into houses without knocking, Stamp Paid feels uncomfortable entering 124 unannounced. Stamp Paid is considered by the community to be a figure of salvation, and he is welcomed at every door in town. He feels very angry when he finds out that Paul D is living in the church.

‘‘What’s going on? Since when a Blackman come to town have to sleep in a cellar like a dog?’’ P 186

Word bank for Stamp Paid:

Community spirit

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