Women Of Color In Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye

Decent Essays

During the 1940’s, about thirty years before The Bluest Eye was written, the standards of society caused young men and women of color to desire light skin, blue eyes, and blonde hair. In a time where racism was prevalent, the African American culture longed for the freedom each and every white person was given. Fighting for their rights after the Great Depression, the confidence of the African American people, especially that of young girls, remained poor due to the wrongful bullying of the many racist white people. A good self image and upbringing for young African American individuals remain crucial for the well being and mental health of each young person. In The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison, Pecola desires blue eyes because of societal views and her mother Paulines treatment, each affecting her self image. Because she lives in a time where racism is prevalent, Pecola’s desire for blue eyes becomes her main focus. Her dark, “dirty” skin contributes to her insecurity of her dark brown, disliked eyes. Pecola is affected by societal views because she knows she does not fit the beauty standards of the time, for she does not have the light skin, blue eyes, and beauty she routinely prays for each night. Considered normal, the kids around her bully her and make fun of her dark skin, only increasing her anxiety. Those who bullied her thrived off of her insecurity: “Her simplicity decorated us, her guilt sanctified us, her pain made us glow with health" (p. 205). Her

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