The opinions of others, wether one notices or not, greatly affect his or her life. In Toni Morrison’s novel The Bluest Eye, Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl with dark brown eyes, is deemed ugly. Although she does not possess ugliness; she “put it on, so to speak, although it did not belong to [her]” (Morrison 38). Pecola believes she is ugly because she does not meet the societal beauty standard. Pecola convinces herself that all her struggles are rooted in the fact that she not beautiful. If Pecola was white, blond, and blue-eyed her life would be different—it would be better. Pecola believes that having blue eyes would change her entire life. Though she would not be given different friends or a different family, those same friends …show more content…
If Pecola acquired blue eyes she believes she would no longer be an outcast. She believes her peers will accept her. After seeing how the new girl, Maureen Peal, with “sloe green eyes” and white skin “enchanted the entire school,” Pecola makes the hypothesis that having blue eyes would make her popular amongst her classmates (62). She believes that to have blue-green eyes and white skin earns her acceptance. Pecola wants everyone to look at her the same way they look at Maureen. She desires to be the girl that enchants the school. Though Pecola seeks admiration from all of her peers, Pecola ultimately seeks Maureen’s approval and acceptance. Pecola wants the prettiest girl in the class to view her as beautiful. However, after a dispute with Pecola, Maureen exclaims, “I am cute! And you are ugly! Black and ugly e mos. I am cute!” (73). Pecola, after hearing this proclamation, comes to the realization that the most beautiful girl in school believes that being black means being ugly. Therefore, Maureen proclaims that being white must be what leads to beauty and popularity. In fact, at the end of the novel when Pecola is conversing with herself she asks, “What does Maureen think about your eyes?” (196). This question further proves that if Maureen admired Pecola in the same manner everyone admired her, Pecola would feel beautiful. She would be beautiful like Maureen, and everyone will accept her.
In the course of The Bluest Eye, Pecola Breedlove has shown signs of low self esteem. She would always be the one to compare herself to something she admires to be beautiful. Perhaps, sometimes problems surround her get a little too much, she has not yet realized the fog will clear up. For example in the autumn chapter, a quote has said “Thrown, in this way, into the binding conviction that only a miracle could relieve her, she would never know her beauty. She would only see what there was to see: the eyes of other people.” There is no such thing as a “Pecola’s point of view”. She lives off of people's judgements and believe physical appearance is all there is to a person. Her desire to be beautiful is not having attractive long black hair and golden skin color, but blonde hair with a white pigmentation. Which causes her to dream and want even more.
Pecola evaluated herself ugly, and wanted to have a pair of blue eyes so that every problem could be solved. Pecola was an African-American and lived in a family with problems. Her father ran away because of crime, her brother left because of their fighting parents, and was discriminated simply because she has dark-skin. Pecola is a passive person. She is almost destroyed because of her violent father, Cholly Breedlove, who raped her own daughter after drinking. Because of this, Pecola kept thinking about her goal- to reach the standard of beauty. However, she was never satisfied with it. Pecola believed once she become beautiful, fighting between her parents would no longer happen, her brother would come back, and her father would no long be a rapist. No problem would exist anymore.
In The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison depicts racism all throughout the novel. Discrimination is very heavy in the 1940s, and the protagonist Pecola Breedlove experiences that. Pecola is a lower-class black girl who is constantly picked on for not only her looks, but her uncontrollable family situation. Maureen Peal is a new girl that arrives at Pecola’s school, and she is an upper-class, wealthy black girl. When Maureen goes out for ice cream with Pecola, Frieda, and Claudia, the girls talk about menstruation, and Maureen accuses Pecola if she has ever seen her father naked. Pecola denies the accusation, and conflict arises between the girls. Maureen shouts, “‘I am cute! And you are ugly! Black and ugly black e mos. I am cute!’” (Morrison 73).
Throughout Toni Morrison's novel The Bluest Eye, she captures, with vivid insight, the plight of a young African American girl and what she would be subjected to in a media contrived society that places its ideal of beauty on the e quintessential blue-eyed, blonde woman. The idea of what is beautiful has been stereotyped in the mass media since the beginning and creates a mental and emotional damage to self and soul. This oppression to the soul creates a socio-economic displacement causing a cycle of dysfunction and abuses. Morrison takes us through the agonizing story of just such a young girl, Pecola Breedlove, and her aching desire to have what is considered beautiful - blue eyes. Racial stereotypes of beauty contrived and nourished by
The novel The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison presents the certain type of beauty admired by the main character in this fictional story, which seems to be the main content of the novel. The first thing that the people judge is the physical appearance, no matter from which part of the world anyone comes from. The stereotype of defining a beauty in a certain way still prevails in our society. On the other hand, human beings being a social animal, cannot remain secluded from the society. They shape themselves into the societal beliefs, values, trend, culture etc. of the society. Especially, the ones who do not have the tendency or ability to contend are easily influenced. Likewise, the main character, the young black girl self-loathes up to the point
If she had beautiful blue eyes, Pecola imagines, people would not want to do ugly things in front of her or to her. The accuracy of this insight is affirmed by her experience of being teased by the boys—when Maureen comes to her rescue, it seems that they no longer want to behave badly under Maureen’s attractive gaze. In a more basic sense, Pecola and her family are mistreated in part because they happen to have black skin. By wishing for blue eyes rather than lighter skin, Pecola indicates that she wishes to see things differently as much as she wishes to be seen differently. She can only receive this wish, in effect, by blinding herself. Pecola is then able to see herself as beautiful, but only at the cost of her ability to see accurately both herself and the world around her. The connection between how one is seen and what one sees has a uniquely tragic outcome for
Throughout all of history there has been an ideal beauty that most have tried to obtain. But what if that beauty was impossible to grasp because something was holding one back. There was nothing one could do to be ‘beautiful’. Growing up and being convinced that one was ugly, useless, and dirty. For Pecola Breedlove, this state of longing was reality. Blue eyes, blonde hair, and pale white skin was the definition of beauty. Pecola was a black girl with the dream to be beautiful. Toni Morrison takes the reader into the life of a young girl through Morrison’s exceptional novel, The Bluest Eye. The novel displays the battles that Pecola struggles with each and every day. Morrison takes the reader through the themes of whiteness and beauty,
The desire to feel beautiful has never been more in demand, yet so impossible to achieve. In the book “The Bluest Eye”, the author, Toni Morrison, tells the story of two black families that live during the mid-1900’s. Even though slavery is a thing of the past, discrimination and racism are still a big issue at this time. Through the whole book, characters struggle to feel beautiful and battle the curse of being ugly because of their skin color. Throughout the book Pecola feels ugly and does not like who she is because of her back skin. She believes the only thing that can ever make her beautiful is if she got blue eyes. Frieda, Pecola, Claudia, and other black characters have been taught that the key to being beautiful is by having white skin. So by being black, this makes them automatically ugly. In the final chapter of the book, the need to feel beautiful drives Pecola so crazy that she imagines that she has blue eyes. She thinks that people don’t want to look at her because they are jealous of her beauty, but the truth is they don’t look at her because she is pregnant. From the time these black girls are little, the belief that beauty comes from the color of their skin has been hammered into their mind. Mrs. Breedlove and Geraldine are also affected by the standards of beauty and the impossible goal to look and be accepted by white people. Throughout “The Bluest Eye” Toni Morrison uses the motif of beauty to portray its negative effect on characters.
Beauty is said to be in the eyes of the beholder, but what if the image of beauty is forced into the minds of many? The beauty of a person could be expressed in many different ways, as far as looks and personality goes, but the novel The Bluest Eye begs to differ. It contradicts the principle, because beauty is no longer just a person’s opinion but beauty has been made into an unwritten rule, a standard made by society for society. The most important rule is that in order to be beautiful, girls have to look just like a white doll, with blue eyes, light pink skin, and have blond hair. And if they’re not, they are not beautiful. Pecola, one of community’s ugly children, lives life each day wanting to
In the novels, The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison and The Things They Carried, by Tim O'Brien, the two authors portray masculine traits through their primary female characters to symbolize a disconnection from society. Morrison portrays Claudia and Pecola as characters that many people can relate to. In the novel, Pecola is criticized for many points that are entirely not her fault such as her looks, her unwanted pregnancy, and the unfeminine way she acts. These criticisms eventually drive Pecola to the point of insanity, where she becomes obsessed with the thought of having idyllic blue eyes although she still possesses “ugly” brown eyes. Claudia is the youngest and exhibits many masculine traits that are viewed negatively among the female figures in her life, making her feel like an outcast. This idea of never being perfect enough is a prominent one throughout the novel and is especially relatable to the modern day female in society due to the immense beauty market that constantly exploits women’s insecurity. Morrison and O’brien show this trope of insecurity through masculine traits in women and how this manifests an “unconventional” personality.
There are many factors that lead people to be what they are now. In “The Bluest Eye”, Toni Morrison discusses the idea of “self-image” and the factors that lead the character to develop his/her self-image. The main character of this story is Pecola and the story discuss how she views herself. Self-image is the idea a person has about his/her abilities, appearance, and personality. Pecola’s self-image is she being inferior, unwanted, and ugly. The factors that lead to Pecola’s self-image are the environment and society. Furthermore, through Pecola, Toni Morrison is trying to convey the idea that people view themselves based on how the others view or see them.
In The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison strongly ties the contents of her novel to its structure and style through the presentation of chapter titles, dialogue, and the use of changing narrators. These structural assets highlight details and themes of the novel while eliciting strong responses and interpretations from readers. The structure of the novel also allows for creative and powerful presentations of information. Morrison is clever in her style, forcing readers to think deeply about the novel’s heavy content without using the structure to allow for vagueness.
The novel The Bluest Eye written by Toni Morrison is subjected on a young girl, Pecola Breedlove and her experiences growing up in a poor black family. The life depicted is one of poverty, ridicule, and dissatisfaction of self. Pecola feels ugly because of her social status as a poor young black girl and longs to have blue eyes, the pinnacle of beauty and worth. Throughout the book, Morrison touches on controversial subjects, such as the depicting of Pecola's father raping her, Mrs. Breedlove's sexual feelings toward her husband, and Pecola's menstruation. The book's content is controversial on many levels and it has bred conflict among its readers.
It is evident in the novel that Pecola is treated by others as an ‘inconvenience’. She possesses no voice or physical integrity. Other than accepting her ethnic identity as a black girl, she assumes a false identity. She is not happy with her appearance and yearns for blue eyes only – a symbolic of American White beauty. Morrison, here, uses a contrast between Sharley Temple and Pecola. Pecola goes literally crazy by the disparity between her existence and the epitome of beauty set by the dominant White culture. Pecola’s psyche has been deformed by the oppressing White culture. Hence, she rejects her original identity and craves for a false notion of beauty.
Pecola Breedlove, an eleven-year-old black girl in Tony Morrison’s The Bluest Eye, combats with self love and self image throughout the entire novel. Her only wish is to be loved and adored, and she believes the only route to that destination is to simply be more “white”. Throughout her journey in Morrison’s masterpiece, she attempts to transform herself into an idealistic version of herself, but she ultimately discovers that she is physically unable to attain what she had hoped for and is driven to a point of madness and deep misery.