A Mercy-logo

A Mercy

Toni Morrison

In the 1680s the slave trade was still in its infancy. In the Americas, virulent religious and class divisions, prejudice and oppression were rife, providing the fertile soil in which slavery and race hatred were planted and took root. Jacob is an Anglo-Dutch trader and adventurer, with a small holding in the harsh north. Despite his distaste for dealing in "flesh," he takes a small slave girl in part payment for a bad debt from a plantation owner in Catholic Maryland. This is Florens, "with the hands of a slave and the feet of a Portuguese lady." Florens looks for love, first from Lina, an older servant woman at her new master's house, but later from a handsome blacksmith, an African, never enslaved. There are other voices: Lina, whose tribe was decimated by smallpox; their mistress, Rebekka, herself a victim of religious intolerance back in England; Sorrow, a strange girl who's spent her early years at sea; and finally the devastating voice of Florens' mother. A Mercy reveals what lies beneath the surface of slavery. But at its heart it is the ambivalent, disturbing story of a mother who casts off her daughter in order to save her, and of a daughter who may never exorcise that abandonment. Acts of mercy may have unforeseen consequences.

In the 1680s the slave trade was still in its infancy. In the Americas, virulent religious and class divisions, prejudice and oppression were rife, providing the fertile soil in which slavery and race hatred were planted and took root. Jacob is an Anglo-Dutch trader and adventurer, with a small holding in the harsh north. Despite his distaste for dealing in "flesh," he takes a small slave girl in part payment for a bad debt from a plantation owner in Catholic Maryland. This is Florens, "with the hands of a slave and the feet of a Portuguese lady." Florens looks for love, first from Lina, an older servant woman at her new master's house, but later from a handsome blacksmith, an African, never enslaved. There are other voices: Lina, whose tribe was decimated by smallpox; their mistress, Rebekka, herself a victim of religious intolerance back in England; Sorrow, a strange girl who's spent her early years at sea; and finally the devastating voice of Florens' mother. A Mercy reveals what lies beneath the surface of slavery. But at its heart it is the ambivalent, disturbing story of a mother who casts off her daughter in order to save her, and of a daughter who may never exorcise that abandonment. Acts of mercy may have unforeseen consequences.
More Information

Genres:

Fiction

Description:

In the 1680s the slave trade was still in its infancy. In the Americas, virulent religious and class divisions, prejudice and oppression were rife, providing the fertile soil in which slavery and race hatred were planted and took root. Jacob is an Anglo-Dutch trader and adventurer, with a small holding in the harsh north. Despite his distaste for dealing in "flesh," he takes a small slave girl in part payment for a bad debt from a plantation owner in Catholic Maryland. This is Florens, "with the hands of a slave and the feet of a Portuguese lady." Florens looks for love, first from Lina, an older servant woman at her new master's house, but later from a handsome blacksmith, an African, never enslaved. There are other voices: Lina, whose tribe was decimated by smallpox; their mistress, Rebekka, herself a victim of religious intolerance back in England; Sorrow, a strange girl who's spent her early years at sea; and finally the devastating voice of Florens' mother. A Mercy reveals what lies beneath the surface of slavery. But at its heart it is the ambivalent, disturbing story of a mother who casts off her daughter in order to save her, and of a daughter who may never exorcise that abandonment. Acts of mercy may have unforeseen consequences.

Language:

English

Length:

6h 28m


Chapters

Chapter 1
Chapter 1

00:49


Chapter 2
Chapter 2

04:35


Chapter 3
Chapter 3

04:26


Chapter 4
Chapter 4

03:59


Chapter 5
Chapter 5

05:02


Chapter 6
Chapter 6

05:10


Chapter 7
Chapter 7

04:24


Chapter 8
Chapter 8

04:29


Chapter 9
Chapter 9

04:24


Chapter 10
Chapter 10

04:27


Chapter 11
Chapter 11

04:25


Chapter 12
Chapter 12

04:04


Chapter 13
Chapter 13

03:53


Chapter 14
Chapter 14

03:29


Chapter 15
Chapter 15

03:58


Chapter 16
Chapter 16

04:00


Chapter 17
Chapter 17

03:59


Chapter 18
Chapter 18

04:14


Chapter 19
Chapter 19

04:31


Chapter 20
Chapter 20

05:08


Chapter 21
Chapter 21

03:58


Chapter 22
Chapter 22

03:12


Chapter 23
Chapter 23

03:20


Chapter 24
Chapter 24

03:22


Chapter 25
Chapter 25

03:23


Chapter 26
Chapter 26

02:54


Chapter 27
Chapter 27

04:28


Chapter 28
Chapter 28

02:57


Chapter 29
Chapter 29

03:06


Chapter 30
Chapter 30

03:59


Chapter 31
Chapter 31

03:10


Chapter 32
Chapter 32

04:04


Chapter 33
Chapter 33

04:07


Chapter 34
Chapter 34

04:14


Chapter 35
Chapter 35

03:34


Chapter 36
Chapter 36

03:38


Chapter 37
Chapter 37

03:32


Chapter 38
Chapter 38

03:50


Chapter 39
Chapter 39

02:42


Chapter 40
Chapter 40

03:22


Chapter 41
Chapter 41

02:16


Chapter 42
Chapter 42

04:04


Chapter 43
Chapter 43

04:42


Chapter 44
Chapter 44

04:58


Chapter 45
Chapter 45

04:43


Chapter 46
Chapter 46

04:28


Chapter 47
Chapter 47

04:22


Chapter 48
Chapter 48

04:39


Chapter 49
Chapter 49

04:36


Chapter 50
Chapter 50

04:42


Chapter 51
Chapter 51

04:49


Chapter 52
Chapter 52

04:53


Chapter 53
Chapter 53

04:10


Chapter 54
Chapter 54

03:44


Chapter 55
Chapter 55

04:44


Chapter 56
Chapter 56

04:23


Chapter 57
Chapter 57

03:45


Chapter 58
Chapter 58

02:57


Chapter 59
Chapter 59

03:39


Chapter 60
Chapter 60

05:01


Chapter 61
Chapter 61

05:03


Chapter 62
Chapter 62

04:07


Chapter 63
Chapter 63

04:58


Chapter 64
Chapter 64

04:55


Chapter 65
Chapter 65

04:46


Chapter 66
Chapter 66

04:47


Chapter 67
Chapter 67

04:25


Chapter 68
Chapter 68

04:28


Chapter 69
Chapter 69

04:29


Chapter 70
Chapter 70

02:56


Chapter 71
Chapter 71

03:04


Chapter 72
Chapter 72

04:27


Chapter 73
Chapter 73

04:31


Chapter 74
Chapter 74

03:19


Chapter 75
Chapter 75

03:02


Chapter 76
Chapter 76

04:58


Chapter 77
Chapter 77

04:34


Chapter 78
Chapter 78

04:45


Chapter 79
Chapter 79

04:42


Chapter 80
Chapter 80

04:38


Chapter 81
Chapter 81

03:07


Chapter 82
Chapter 82

02:38


Chapter 83
Chapter 83

03:21


Chapter 84
Chapter 84

03:27


Chapter 85
Chapter 85

03:43


Chapter 86
Chapter 86

03:43


Chapter 87
Chapter 87

03:33


Chapter 88
Chapter 88

04:18


Chapter 89
Chapter 89

03:32


Chapter 90
Chapter 90

04:36


Chapter 91
Chapter 91

02:51


Chapter 92
Chapter 92

03:34


Chapter 93
Chapter 93

03:25


Chapter 94
Chapter 94

04:53


Chapter 95
Chapter 95

03:36


Chapter 96
Chapter 96

02:14


Chapter 97
Chapter 97

04:39


Chapter 98
Chapter 98

00:53