Oranges are Not the Only Fruit

This project uses the religious and fruitful imagery of Jeanette Winterson’s Oranges are Not the Only Fruit to explore the role and function of characters within the text, especially relating to the religious structures of her world. Jeanette’s life is shaped by Christianity and its network of followers, ranging from devout to extreme, as much as it is shaped by her own burgeoning queer identity. Divided into five categories, or fruits, readers of this project are guided through a sampling of every major character in the book, making physical and describable, albeit abstractly, the ways that their interconnected relationships affect and shape her. Structured after a scene from the novel in which Jeanette imagines a garden with an orange tree at the center, this project uses reference to other Biblical gardens like the Garden of Eden and the garden described in Song of Solomon to show the intertwining of Jeanette’s story, her small town life, and the dichotomy of holy and unholy enforced by her church and her community.

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In the Garden of Delights