Sethe, like Boy Willie didn’t want to be bothered by the white man anymore and absolutely feared oppression sweeping over her life once again and both characters were willing to do anything to protect what little freedom they had, even if that meant selling years of family history in carvings or killing children so they wouldn’t feel the pain of slavery.
Bernice’s decision to keep the piano though she never used it herself was so that the pain it took to get that piano where it was would never be forgotten.
This is Bernice’s justification for keeping the piano.
It is something that holds so much pain, so much history, and that no white man can take away from her.
Grappling with the specter is sport in comparison to the hazards of the oppressive 1940s society. In order to disconnect the ghost's ties to the piano, Avery agrees to bless Berniece's house.
When Avery, an up-and-coming reverend, passionately recites passages from the Bible, the ghost does not budge., she states: "Even a threatening ghost hovering in any room it chooses pales before the gripping fear of what is outside - the steady, casual intimacy with imprisonment and violent death." She also observes that "Against years of menace and routine violence, wrestling with a ghost is mere play." Morrison's analysis is spot on.During the play's climax, Boy Willie enthusiastically battles the ghosts, running up the stairs, tumbling down again, only to go charging back up.She realizes that she must call on the spirits of her mother, father, and grandparents.She sits down at the piano and, for the first time in a year, she plays.Women’s Literature – The Piano Lesson Essay In The Piano Lesson both Boy Willie and his sister Bernice have their own agendas for their father’s old piano, crafted by their grandfather. He wants to sell it so that he can buy land to farm.Bernice, although she is afraid to play on it wants to keep it where it is in her living room because the carvings on the piano tell their family’s history and act as a reminder of her father’s foolishness in trying to steal it and her mother’s hard work and sadness she put polished into the piano.She was exhibiting the drive to do anything to prevent her terrible past in slavery from taking over her children’s lives.It is quite reasonable for Boy Willie to be afraid of always having to live off of other people, not being capable of growing his own food, never owning his own house, and raising his future family as someone else sees fit.Their father died to save that piano and their mother polished it every day of the rest of her widowed life with her sweat, tears, blood.Bernice didn’t want this foolishness of thievery and murder to ever be forgotten, especially because her husband died over stolen hunks of wood as well.