'Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit' Chapter Analysis - Genesis and Exodus

Topics: The Exodus, Book of Exodus, Israelites Pages: 3 (1037 words) Published: April 9, 2013
The themes of Winterson's chapters roughly correspond with the themes of the biblical books. For example, the biblical book of Genesis describes the beginnings of the world, man, and the tribes of Israel. Similarly, Winterson's chapter also tells of Jeanette's beginnings, describing Jeanette, her placement in her family, and her family life.

There are a lot of religious references in this chapter. Winterson describes Jeanette's adoption with imagery and language from the New Testament. Jeanette's mother sees the adoption almost as if she were Virgin Mary as she has a child without having sex. For this reason, Jeanette's mother was "bitter that Mary got there first." Winterson also compare herself to Christ. The star that led her mother to Jeanette's crib relates to the star of Bethlehem. After Jeanette's mother found her, Jeanette cried out for seven days and seven nights while being taunted by demons, much in the same way that Christ stood tempted by the Devil for the same time in the desert. Jeanette's mother confirms Jeanette's position as a Christ figure by convincing Jeanette that her destiny lies in changing the world. Because of her mother's propaganda, Jeanette herself reports that from a very young age she always knew that she was special.

Winterson foreshadows Jeanette's future same sex tendencies several times in this chapter. The gypsy woman's prediction that Jeanette will not marry will eventually turn out to be true. The two women who run the paper shop obviously are believed to be in a lesbian relationship, although Jeanette doesn't understand this at the age of seven. Her mother’s hostility towards these women foreshadows the way that she later will reject Jeanette. The black and white world that Jeanette's mother sees, with either enemies or friends, also foreshadows the difficulties that Jeanette will face. Her sexuality will place her in a grey space that does not exist for her mother. Eventually her mother will not know if...
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