The bluest eye themes. The Bluest Eye Study Guide 2022-10-11
The bluest eye themes Rating:
The Bluest Eye, a novel by Toni Morrison, explores themes of race, beauty, and self-worth through the experiences of Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl growing up in Ohio in the 1940s. Throughout the novel, Morrison examines the ways in which societal expectations and prejudices shape the lives and identities of black individuals, and how these forces can lead to self-hatred and internalized racism.
One of the central themes of The Bluest Eye is the damaging effects of white beauty standards on the self-esteem and sense of worth of black individuals. Pecola, like many other black girls, internalizes the message that she is inferior because of her dark skin and African features, and longs for the blue eyes and blond hair that are seen as the epitome of beauty in white culture. This desire for white beauty leads Pecola to feel shame about her own appearance and to believe that she is ugly and unlovable.
Another theme that emerges in the novel is the impact of racism and discrimination on the psychological well-being of black individuals. Pecola's father, Cholly, is a victim of racism and abuse, and this trauma shapes his own self-worth and his relationships with others. The Breedlove family, like many black families, is subjected to poverty, violence, and neglect, and these experiences contribute to their feelings of hopelessness and despair.
The Bluest Eye also explores themes of family and community, and how these relationships can either support or harm an individual's sense of self. Pecola's mother, Pauline, is a maid for a wealthy white family, and she is torn between her love for her daughter and her own internalized racism. The community in which Pecola grows up is also divided and fractured, with few sources of support or guidance for its young members.
Overall, The Bluest Eye is a powerful exploration of the ways in which societal forces can shape the lives and identities of individuals, and the ways in which people can resist these forces and find their own sense of worth and belonging. Through the character of Pecola, Morrison highlights the devastating impact of racism and white beauty standards on black individuals, and the resilience and strength that can emerge in the face of these challenges.
Beauty vs. Ugliness Theme in The Bluest Eye
Macteer takes great pride in it, and Geraldine lives in a beautiful house, which allows her to feel superior to other black families. Therefore, more often than not, the children's presence is ignored. In the novel The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison explores the issue of beauty and what it means to be considered beautiful. The Beauty Beauty is one of the most powerful forces and themes in The Bluest Eye. Contrary to the incapacitating effect of internalized ugliness, beauty endows certain characters with power. And she thought God could do anything 163.
In the first chapter, she destroys her white dolls out of hatred of white people. The prevalence of sexual violence in the novel suggests that racism is not the only thing that distorts black girlhoods. Retrieved November 10, 2016. We had defended ourselves since memory against everything and everybody considered all speech a code to be broken by us, and all gestures subject to careful analysis; we had become headstrong, devious, and arrogant. Such an emotion would have destroyed him. The challenge, along with the pressure and experience of sexual abuse, becomes too difficult for her, and she becomes insane. Adamson, Joseph; Clark, Hilary, eds.
These outcomes, in particular, show themselves strongly through Pecola. She fails to meet the existing requirements, is raped by her father, and becomes mentally ill because of all these events. Pecola is also a recipient of physical violence, first at the hands of her classmates when they throw rocks at her, and again when her father rapes her. Colored people were neat and quiet; niggers were dirty and loud… The line between colored and nigger was not always clear; subtle and telltale signs threatened to erode it, and the watch had to be constant. During the Civil Rights movement, another movement emerged, called the Black is Beautiful Movement. Retrieved November 3, 2016.
You mean like Soaphead Church? Retrieved January 16, 2018. Instead of sex being an enjoyable act between two people, sex, like race and beauty standards, works as a form of oppression. For example, Pecola, the main character, wishes for blue eyes as a way to escape the oppression that results from her having dark skin. He claims that Morrison presents an "inverted world," entirely opposite from the Dick and Jane story that is at the beginning of the novel. This evasion of sexual oppression, however, comes only through passing the point of being sexually desirable, or through exploiting one's sexuality as a means to gain power over men.
Between Cholly and Pauline Breedlove, Pecola experiences all four types. Retrieved January 21, 2022. The Bluest Eye is a story about the search for beauty and the tragedy that can come with wanting to be something that you are not. Into her eyes came the picture of Cholly and Mrs. The climax of the story offers the primary example of this form of oppression. Why was it important? For instance, when a parent physically abuses their child, that child can suffer anywhere from physical cuts, bruises or lashes to the extremes of brain damage, hearing or vision loss.
After Aunt Jimmy dies, Cholly runs off in search of Samson in Macon, Georgia, where he is left distraught and disappointed with his discovery. Despite her relative naivete, she is one of few, if any, characters that feel sympathy for Pecola. This is most clearly seen when Pecolas father rapes her. National Coalition Against Censorship. The connection between how one is seen and what one sees has a uniquely tragic outcome for her. The best hiding place was love.
This is most clearly seen in Pecola Breedlove, who believes that if she could just have blue eyes, she would be happy. The novel is a reminder that beauty is not everything, and that there is more to life than just looking good. The Bluest Eye, however, was still left available within their libraries for students to read if they wish at their own discretion, as the school wished to make clear that they were not "denying students access to that level of literature. The black characters of the The Bluest Eye have been taught to believe that whiteness is the paragon of beauty. Adult women, having learned to hate the blackness of their own bodies, take this hatred out on their children—Mrs.
Unfortunately for Pecola, her new eyes are merely a symptom of her fragmented mind and undoing. They promoted the importance of the nuclear family and helped to foster literacy in young children as well. What happens on the surface is completely noticeable and harmful to the child, but what happens to the child emotionally, behaviorally, and socially can be far more destructive. Most black families in the novel don't own homes, but still possess a sense of home and family. She, in turn, fought back in a purely feminine way—with frying pans and pokers, and occasionally a flatiron would sail toward his head. Cholly, for example, is abandoned by his mother and father, and so abandons his own children emotionally and psychologically because he never learns how to be a father.