INSTRUCTIONAL APPROACH KEY CONCEPTS TO BE DEVELOPED Students develop a deeper understanding of how authors use juxtaposition to develop a theme or idea within a text. Students complete this work by examining The Bluest Eye, writing an essay, and finally by selecting an image to illustrate the type of juxtaposition they have identified within the text. Students practice providing feedback to peers by participating in a gallery walk at the end of the Cornerstone.
To have something as wonderful as that happen would take a long, long time"(46) This line from the text shows that to Pecola this white feature represents beauty and the end of her problems. Furthermore, symbolism can also be found in the homes of the characters. In the novel, homes are a symbol of economic status. The reader can infer that the nicer the home is, the richer the character.
She expressed, how she felt about her skin, and provided great reason for how she viewed herself for being colored. She spoke of her ancestors and how they paid the price for her civilization; so therefore, she doesn’t have to feel less of a person because of her skin color. She even mentions a time where she forgets that she was a person o colored until she thrown against the background of white; meaning she sees no color until she is constantly reminded. The author shows core values by being happy in the skin she is in.
There are multiple symbols that Morrison uses to symbolize this white beauty standard and different desires to obtain it such as milk, and Pecola’s obsession with specifically drinking milk from the Shirley Temple cup. During Pecola’s stay with Frieda and Claudia, this white beauty standard is seen furthermore when Claudia’s view on beauty is juxtaposed with Pecola’s. Unlike Pecola she wasn’t obsessed with drinking milk or playing with white dolls but white beauty standards still affected her. When it came to the baby dolls, Claudia “wanted to dismember them in order to discover the dearness, to find the beauty, and the desirability” for them. Claudia stated that “Adults, older girls, shops, magazines, newspapers, window signs—all the world had agreed that blue-eyed, yellow-haired, pink skinned doll was what every girl child treasured” (Morrison 20).
1) Society has change the way Pecola perceives herself and she has the idea in her mind that her life would be less miserable if she has blue eyes. She is always thinking that “if those eyes of hers were different, that is to say, beautiful, she herself would be different” (Morrison 46). Pecola has gotten the impression of her life being complete if only she has blue eyes. She would see the eyes of others and become envious of their blue eyes. The boys at school would always pick on her and call her an ugly black girl.
The book “The Bluest Eye” by Toni Morrison takes place in a poor area of Lorain, Ohio in the year 1941. I think this is a great setting for the book. It teaches people now about the hardships that people of color (specifically African-Americans) had to face every day in the early 20th century. Although I like the setting now, I think it would be very interesting to read a book about the same topic in the present time. Hardships for any person of color still exist, even though it may not be as bad or easy to see.
For her ugliness was not inherently hers – it was handed to her and imposed upon her: when the master tells her she is ugly, “[she] had looked about [herself] and saw nothing to contradict the statement; saw, in fact, support for it leaning at [her] from every billboard, every movie, every glance” (37). She has entirely internalized the values of a society that strives to uphold its white supremacy by
Breedlove reprimands Pecola, ignoring the burns on her legs from the hot berries, and immediately assures the little white girl that she will quickly bake her a new pie. This demonstrates to the reader that Mrs. Breedlove is not an incapable mother, but she actively chooses to ignore her own children, who are outside the narrative of the white beauty aesthetic, in favour of white children, who better match her ideals. (Sande) Her longing for being close to white society affects her so greatly that she rejects her only daughter. This incident is an example of Mrs. Breedlove’s internalization of white societal standards of beauty and the bad treatment and neglect that Pecola is receiving from her mother.
Toni Morrison, the first black women Nobel Prize winner, in her first novel, The Bluest Eye depicts the tragic condition of the blacks in racist America. It examines how the ideologies perpetuated by the dominant groups and adopted by the marginal groups influence the identity of the black women. Through the depictions of white beauty icons, Morrison’s black characters lose themselves to self-hatred. They try to obliterate their heritage, and eventually like Pecola Breedlove, the child protagonist, who yearns for blue eyes, has no recourse except madness. This assignment focusses on double consciousness and its devastating effects on Pecola.
Pecola and her mother, Pauline, see themselves as ugly because they hold themselves to beauty standards in which light-skinned people are the ideal. Pecola and her mother have a brutal home life due to the drunken violence of Cholly Breedlove, and the constant pressure of beauty standards only adds to their misfortune. Morrison explains this pressure by asserting that “[i]t was as though some mysterious all-knowing master had given each one a cloak of ugliness to wear, and they
The social standards of beauty and the idea of the American Dream in The Bluest Eye leads Mrs. Breedlove to feelings of shame that she later passes on to Pecola. The Breedloves are surrounded by the idea of perfection, and their absence of it makes them misfits. Mrs. Breedlove works for a white family, the Fishers. She enjoys the luxury of her work life and inevitably favors her work over her family. This leads Pecola to struggle to find her identity, in a time where perception is everything.
Many of the black characters, including Pecola, Cholly, and Pauline believe that they are indeed “ugly” and “dirty” because it’s what society has wanted people to think since the beginning of time. This idea that they are worth nothing and that there is no beauty or cleanliness in them has become embedded in their memories considering it is all they’ve ever known while growing up. Pecola and her family “did not live in a storefront because they were having temporary difficulty adjusting to the cutbacks at the plant. They lived there because they were poor and black, and they stayed there because they believed they were ugly” (38). While some of the black characters in The Bluest Eye are very much confident in themselves, there are characters like the Breedloves, who have succumbed to society’s opinion and have started to believe that they are the equivalent of dirtiness.
Morrison 's first novel, The Bluest Eye, examines the tragic effects of imposing white, middle-class American ideals of beauty on the developing female identity of a young African American girl during the early 1940s. Inspired by a conversation Morrison once had with an elementary school classmate who wished for blue eyes, the novel poignantly shows the psychological devastation of a young black girl, Pecola Breedlove, who searches for love and acceptance in a world that denies and devalues people of her own race. As her mental state slowly unravels, Pecola hopelessly longs to possess the conventional American standards of feminine beauty—namely, white skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes—as presented to her by the popular icons and traditions of white culture. Written as a fragmented narrative from multiple perspectives and with significant typographical deviations, The Bluest Eye juxtaposes passages from the Dick-and-Jane grammar school primer with memories and stories of Pecola 's life alternately told in retrospect by one of Pecola 's now-grown childhood friends and by an omniscient narrator. Published in the midst of the Black Arts movement that flourished during the late 1960s and early 1970s, The Bluest Eye has attracted
It is the mother’s vulnerability to the racial standards of beauty that is transmitted to the daughter and ultimately leads to her victimization. In fact, the reason of Pauline’s vulnerability to the racially prejudiced notions of beauty lies in her relationship with her own mother. The relationship between Pecola Breedlove, the protagonist, and her mother, Pauline Breedlove, is ironically characterized by lack of love, and emotional attachment, indifference, frustration and cruelty. Set in a small town in Ohio, during the Depression, The Bluest Eye is the story of eleven year old Pecola Breedlove, who, victimized by the racist society, yearns for blue eyes, which, she believes, will make her worthy of love, happiness and acceptance in the