She references parts in the book where the main characters are taught to feel less than human, specifically when the shopkeeper avoids touching Pecola's hand when giving her candy. Cholly loves Pecola but the only way he can express his love is by a display of madness and affection which is why he rapes her. And also — about the same time on the other side of the Atlantic: Namely, having blue eyes! Columbia, South Carolina: University of South Carolina Press. Bluest Eye s To Pectoral, blue eyes symbolize the beauty and happiness that she associates with the white, middle-class world. More importantly, the narrator suggests that they accept this imposed feeling of ugliness and lack of self-worth without questioning its source and it is this accepting of self-hatred, a hatred that comes form outside the family is one of the biggest problem faced by the family. She becomes restless and begins fantasizing about men and love, which takes her focus away from her work. Pauline constructs her identity based on the movies she watches, her devotion to Christianity, and her role as breadwinner of the family.
We courted death in order to call ourselves brave, and hid like thieves from life. Critics picked up on Morrison's shortcomings as a first time published author. Soaphead Church is the one demonized African-American character in the novel. Satisfying Appetites versus Suppressing Them A number of characters in The Bluest Eye define their lives through a denial of their bodily needs. Motifs Motifs are recurring structures, contrasts, or literary devices that can help to develop and inform the texts major themes. Pauline recalls that it was the last time she saw the green streak of a june bug. She is intensely responsive to color and visual images--the yellow lemonade with seeds floating in it, the streak of green made by the june bugs, the purple of berries, and the rainbow after sex.
This exciting and tender encounter is interrupted by the brutal joke of two white racists who force Cholly, a fourteen year old boy, to perform sex on Darlene for their viewing pleasure. The most blatant case is Schools rape Of his own daughter, Pectoral, which is, in a sense, a repetition of the sexual humiliation Coolly experienced under the gaze of two racist whites. She also struck by how dirty the family is as she cleans their house and clothing. Morrison was also positively reviewed for her break from the status quo of usual novels from the time period, writing to a wider audience and focusing on black subculture in the 1940s, rather than the military culture of the time. Though we may condemn some of her choices, we now sympathize with the experiences that have made these choices seem necessary. Frieda is courageous and unwavering. We were so beautiful when we stood astride her ugliness.
The interaction between Pauline and the white woman captures a lot of the trickiness of racism and its complicated effects on communities. Oh, yes — did we forget to mention? She spent most of it alone and quiet, wishing that her parents would stop fighting both verbally, and, unfortunately, literally as well. And actually relating as an Ohio person, to have the Ohio, what—Board of Education? Through these passages, Morrison is showing the roots of where these issues of black inferiority in the mind of African Americans stems from and how, because of frustration with being unable to live up to such standards, hatred is born and cycled on husbands and children. Kochar argues that to comprehend the complex violence inflicted on Pecola, one must analyze the novel through the Marxist and Feminist lens in addition to the psychoanalytical lens. All of the main characters have internal conflicts that affect the other. Winning as an American is very special-but winning as a Black American is a knockout.
The man, later revealed to be Cholly, approaches Pauline on the hottest day of the year, with yellow eyes and flaring nostrils. What Morrison is stating here is that the feeling of low self-worth after years of being put down is still perpetuating and is resulting in an ugliness that is constantly felt, if not directly seen. In an attempt to beautify herself, Pecola wishes for blue eyes — a standard that was perpetuated through the gifting of white, blue-eyed dolls throughout her childhood. They are just as mean as the white folks she encounters. The Seasons and Nature The novel is divided into the four seasons, but it pointedly refuses to meet the expectations of these seasons.
To what degree are these two concepts generated from within or imposed on us by society? At the beginning of the story, she is a sensitive, withdrawn eleven-year-old black girl who meets Frieda and Claudia because she is placed in their home by social services. A: A Reference Guide to Book Censorship in Schools and Public Libraries. That he would die rather than take his thing out of me. In addition, the string of letters describing Dick and Jane's perfect parents as strong and kind are used to contrast Pecola's parents in the novel. Both Pauline and Cholly leave after the woman threatens to call the police.
The family lived in a town, they rented a five-room house, and the children began to move away, leaving less work to maintain the house. Pauline's fantasizes about a figure, a god or a man, who will heal her disabled foot and allow her to escape her ugliness and worthlessness, indicates both her own innocence at the time but also the sense among women that their own identities and futures are entirely dependent on having a relationship with a man. Women in Literature: Reading Through the Lens of Gender Wesport: Greenwood, 2003. At the beginning of World War I, the Williamses moved to Kentucky. Scott believes that Pecola attempts to seek the power associated with whiteness, and in her attempt to conform, she develops a destructive desire for blue eyes.
It also presents the different expectations of the women such as the culture of the women, playing with dolls and associating with feminine magazines. The gap between the idealized, sanitized, upper-middle-class world of Dick and Jane who we assume to be white, though we are never told so and the often dark and ugly world Of the novel is emphasized by the chapter headings excerpted from the primer. Her conversation with Maureen reveals her love of the cinema, a love presumably learned from her mother, and her admiration of European-American film stars. It was the second most challenged book of 2013 and the fourth most challenged book of 2014. From her mature point of view, she recognizes the crime was more than just that perpetrated by Cholly, but more pervasively, that perpetrated by the community against its own children.
It was as though she was not even there. How does Cholly respond to her demands for money? It is assumed that ideology needs time to work, and it has not fully taken Claudia in by the time she witnesses what happens to Pecola. This ideology damages Pecola and her mother, Pauline, who fully accepts Christianity and spends her time caring for a white family as opposed to her own. When she gets her period, she is shocked. Claudia resists this color ideology, this internalized racism, vehemently.
Around the age of fifteen, Pauline develops romantic fantasies about love. Why does Pauline want Cholly to have an orgasm before she has hers? At the time Morrison was writing the novel, the racist society that condemned Pecola Breedlove was still very much in place and Morrison took great risks-both within the black community and American society as a whole—to tell this important story. And she let us, and thereby deserved our contempt. Although slavery had long ago been abolished, racism was still alive and thriving in Lorain, Ohio. Now I be strong enough, pretty enough, and young enough to let him make me come. Pauline doesn't fit into the black middle-class society and refuses to accept Anglo brainwashing.