Bluest Eye Essay, Research Paper
Toni Morisson & # 8217 ; s novel The Bluest Eye is about the life of the Breedlove
household who resides in Lorain, Ohio, in the late thirtiess. This household consists of
the female parent Pauline, the male parent Cholly, the boy Sammy, and the girl Pecola. The novel & # 8217 ; s focal point is the girl, an eleven-year-old Black miss who is seeking to suppress a turn with self-hatred. Everyday she encounters racism, non merely from white people, but largely from her ain race. In their eyes she is much excessively dark, and the darkness of her tegument somehow implies that she is inferior, and harmonizing to everyone else, her tegument makes her even & # 8220 ; uglier. & # 8221 ; She feels she can get the better of this conflict of self-hatred by obtaining bluish eyes, but non merely any blue. She wants the bluest oculus. Morrison is able to utilize her critical oculus to uncover to the reader the immorality that is caused by a society that is indoctrinated by the built-in goodness and beauty of whiteness and the ugliness of inkiness. She uses many different authorship tools to picture how & # 8220 ; white & # 8221 ; beliefs have dominated American and African American civilization. The narrative construction of The Bluest Eye is of import in uncovering merely how permeant and destructive societal racism is. Narrative in fresh comes from several beginnings. Much of the narrative comes from Claudia MacTeer as a nine twelvemonth old kid, but Morrison besides gives the reader the penetration of Claudia reflecting on the narrative as an grownup, some first individual narrative from Pecola & # 8217 ; s female parent, and narrative by Morrison herself as an all-knowing storyteller. Pecola & # 8217 ; s experiences would hold less intending coming from Pecola herself because a entire and complete victim would be an undependable storyteller, unwilling or unable to associate the existent fortunes of that twelvemonth. Claudia, from her vernal artlessness, is able to see and associate how the other characters, particularly Pecola, idolise the & # 8220 ; ideal & # 8221 ; of beauty presented by white, fair-haired film stars like small Shirley Temple. In add-on to narrative construction, the construction and composing of the novel itself help to exemplify how much and for how long white thoughts of household and place have been forced into black civilization. Alternatively of conventional chapters and subdivisions, The Bluest Eye is broken up into seasons, autumn, winter, spring, and summer. This type of organisation suggests that the events described in The Bluest Eye have occurred before, and will happen once more. This sort of rhythm suggests that there is impression that there is no flight from the rhythm of life that Breedloves and MacTeer live in. Further, spliting the book are little extracts from the & # 8220 ; Dick and Jane & # 8221 ; primer that is the original of the white upper-middle category life style. Each extract has, in some manner, to make with the subdivision that follows. So the subdivision that describes Pecola & # 8217 ; s female parent is started with an extract depicting Dick and Jane & # 8217 ; s female parent, and so on. The extracts from & # 8220 ; Dick and Jane & # 8221 ; that head each & # 8220 ; chapter & # 8221 ; are typeset without any infinites or punctuation Markss. The & # 8220 ; Dick and Jane & # 8221 ; snippets demo merely how prevailing and of import the images of white flawlessness are in Pecola & # 8217 ; s life ; Morrison & # 8217 ; s unusual typography illustrates how irrelevant and inappropriate these images really are. Names play an of import portion in The Bluest Eye because they are frequently symbolic of conditions in society or in the context of the narrative. The name of the novel, & # 8220 ; The Bluest Eye, & # 8221 ; is meant to acquire the reader believing about how much value I
s placed on blue-eyed little girls. Pecola and her family are representative of the larger African-American community, and their name, “Breedlove,” is ironic because they live in a society that does not “breed love.” In fact, it breeds hate; hate of blackness, and thus hatred of oneself. The MacTeer girls are flattered when Mr. Henry said “Hello there. You must be Greta Garbo, and you must be Ginger Rogers”, for the names ring of beauty that the girls feel they will never reach. Soaphead Church represents, as his name suggests, the role of the church in African-American life. “I, I have caused a miracle. I gave her the eyes. I gave her the blue, blue, two blue eyes,” Soaphead says. The implication is that the church’s promise that if you worship God and pray to Him that everything will be alright is no better than Soaphead’s promise to Pecola that she will have blue eyes. Morrison reveals the significance of Pecola’s name through the character of Maureen Peal. Maureen confuses Pecola’s name with the name of a character in the movie Imitation of Life. By this allusion, Morrison illustrates that Pecola’s life is an imitation of the real experiences of black women. Morrison also uses metaphors to describe the conditions under which African-Americans in general and Pecola in particular are forced to live. There are two major metaphors in The Bluest Eye, one of marigolds and one of dandelions. Claudia, looking back as an adult, says in the beginning of the novel, “there were no marigolds in the fall of 1941?. She and her sister plant marigold seeds with the belief that if the marigolds would grow and survive, so would Pecola’s baby. Morrison unpacks the metaphor throughout the book, and, through Claudia, finally explains it and broadens its scope to all African-Americans on the last page. “I even think now that the land of the entire country was hostile to marigolds that year. Certain seeds it will not nurture, certain fruits it will not bear . . .” The implication is that Pecola, like so many other African-Americans, never had a chance to grow and succeed because she lived in a society (”soil”) that was inherently racist, and would not nurture her. The other flower, the dandelion, is important as a metaphor because it represents Pecola’s image of herself. Pecola passes some dandelions going into Mr. Yacobowski’s store. “Why, she wonders, do people call them weeds? She thought they were pretty”. After Mr. Yacobowski humiliates her, she again passes the dandelions and thinks; “They are ugly. They are weeds”. She has transferred society’s dislike of her to the dandelions. In The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison tells the story of a little black girl who thinks that if she can live up to the image of the blue-eyed Shirley Temple and Dick and Jane that she will have the perfect life that they have. The importance of this book goes beyond its value as a work of literature. Morrison speaks to the masses, both white and black, showing how a racist social system wears down the minds and souls of people, how dominate images of white heroes and heroines with blue eyes and wonderful lives show young black children that to be white means to be successful and happy, and then they look around at their own lives of poverty and oppression and learn to hate their black heritage for keeping them from the Dick and Jane world. Morrison does not solve these problems, nor does she even try, but she does show a reflection of a world that cannot call itself right or moral.