Attached is a timeline of modern music starting in the late 1890’s leading all the way up to the present. Of all the books, Sula has the largest time span as we look at the growth through aging of characters.
Taking place between the 1920’s through the mid 1960’s, the characters in Sula change just as the music does. Jazz and Blues are leaders in musical culture from the 1920’s all the way through the mid 1940’s when Pop starts to hit the airwaves. From the 1920’s to the 1940’s, Sula is growing into the ideas and values that she will orient her whole life with. The Pop music is Sula’s life is her initiative to leave Bottom and pursue the lifestyle she wants.
With the 1950’s emerges Rock-n-Roll. Now, Sula has become rebellious as a form of self expression to contradict all that is going on around her.
Jazz, Pop, and Rock-n-Roll music all merge together after this through the 1960’s where all genres are complimenting and feeding off of each other. Sula is quickly realizing the merging of all aspects of her life and how they compliment and feed off each other. Whether within her relationship with Nel or the questions she asks herself, all aspects of Sula’s life are coming together.
Though Rock has taken the main stage, it wouldn’t be where it is today without Jazz just like Sula wouldn’t be the same had she not picked up the ideals and values she learned as a child in her “jazz” phase.