Study Guide

Song of Solomon Identity

By Toni Morrison


In Song of Solomon we see a young man undergo an odyssey toward finding himself and toward finding his people. All along the way, he struggles with the concept of community that compels him to forge his being in the context of collective identity, and struggles with the concept of individual identity, forged out of personal journey. He wrestles with the expectations of the black community and with the emptiness that haunts his interior self. Identity is both individually and collectively sought after throughout this novel.

Questions About Identity

  1. When does Milkman first start to question his identity?
  2. Has Milkman found his identity at the end of the novel?
  3. How does Guitar define identity?
  4. Who do you identify with in this novel?

Chew on This

In the world of Song of Solomon, identity is not given, it is forged.

A person’s identity is inextricably linked to his history.