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The Bean Trees

Abandonment is a feeling known to many people. There are different types and levels of abandonment. In The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver, many characters have been introduced to the feeling of abandonment. Abandoning or being abandoned is constant in the novel and Kingsolver uses it to link all of the characters together.
Taylor Greer has lived in Kentucky all her life. Yet, the life available to her in Kentucky is not what she always dreamed of: “none of these sights had so far inspired me to get hogtied to a future as a tobacco farmer’s wife” (3). Living with her mother, Taylor becomes more independent and striven to find a better life. Taylor’s father disappeared before she could even remember what he looks like: “And for all I ever knew of my own daddy I can’t say we weren’t except for Mama swearing up and down that he was nobody I knew and was long gone besides” (2). Taylor’s father’s abandonment contributes to Taylor’s dislike in men: “To hear you tell it, you’d think man was only put on this earth to keep urinals from going to waste” (112). She does not trust any men and Kingsolver displays this by not adding many male characters to the novel. Taylor feeling of being abandoned by her father scars her, even thought she does not express it clearly.
Taylor’s want and need for a better life than the one she has in Kentucky inspires her to leave. With the money she earns from her job counting blood cells at the Pittman County Hospital, Taylor buys a ’55 Volkswagen bug that is falling apart, “In this car I intended to drive out of Pittman County one day and never look back, except maybe for Mama” (10). Taylor’s mother wanted the best for her and always expected the best from her; “There were two things about Mama. One is she always expected the best out of me. And the other is that then no matter...

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