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I struggle with this idea because in other parts of the story Morrison argues that it is important to know your past. I think there needs to be a middle ground where one can know their past but not let the past control thir actions and dreams for the future.

I think its interesting that you say Denver's distain of the past is what protected her from Beloved. I never thought of it that way, and I completely agree.

I think another aspect of that idea is that Denver doesn't know what happened in the past; that is, she doesn't have a past in the slave tradition to draw on. The memories that Beloved brings back in Sethe never existed in Denver and therefor couldn't be accessed.

But if Denver saved herself and her family by shutting out the past, why is it that Sethe, who attempts to do the same thing, is not given the same role and sanity?

I think that what Morrison is saying is that you need to remember the past to protect yourself from it, but you also can't dwell to much on the past, or it will take over your life.

You all are missing the double meaning of the phrase "pass on." Have you never heard of someone saying "don't pass on this deal!" or "don't pass on these great saving." It means that, maybe, you should stop and consider what is going on and take an interest in it. It isn't something that you can afford to pass on.

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