The Bluest Eye Author:Toni Morrison The story of eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove--a black girl in an America whose love for its blond, blue-eyed children can devastate all others--who prays for her eyes to turn blue: so that she will be beautiful, so that people will look at her, so that her world will be different. This is the story of the nightmare at the heart of her yearning ... more »and the tragedy of its fulfillment.
The Bluest Eye, published in 1970, is the first novel written by Toni Morrison, winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature.« less
This book was very insightful. I will long remember it. It really changed the way I thought about outward appearances. The ending will shock you. Don't read ahead!! I recommend it to anyone courageous enough to look inward.
I found this very difficult to read in one setting. Its a book to read, put down and think about, then pick up again. Disturbing, sad, hard to forget. I think I will be still processing this for months.
"The Bluest Eye, the story of a young girl's tortured life, is not a story you can "like". It reads like your worst nightmares, very disturbing and very graphic. It takes a strong stomach to get through this novel. But, this is just what makes the book a masterpiece, that Ms Morrison can draw such powerful feelings from readers. Toni Morrison has grown as a writer. But this book, her first, takes you to a world most didn't know existed and evokes almost unbearably strong emotions. A must read for lovers of great literature. This is not a book you read for pleasure. It's a book you read for the power of the written word."
- Roz Levine
Toni Morrison's stories are always brutally honest, endearing and reach deep into our souls. This novel highlights the great divide that still exists between races--one person at a time. I loved this book.
11 year old Pecola Breedlove wants blue eyes because then she'll be as beloved as the blond, blue-eyed children in America. But for Pecola's family, beauty seems to be nearly unattainable because they are black and live in poverty and pain. This story unfolds through the eyes of 11 yr old Claudia, as she watches Pecola's world change bit by painful bit.
Toni Morrison paints rich colors and beautiful songs with her words - this was my first exposure to T.Morrison, and I'll be reading more. What an amazing story.
Truly one the most amazing books I have ever read. Heartbreaking, poignant, written so beautifully it will make you cry--and tells a story that we should all never forget. A true must-read. Nobel Prize Winner.
This book is written in the most poetic language. Toni Morrison is one of my favorite writers of all time and, in my opinion, this is her best work (I have not read all of them although I am getting very close). A must-read.
Toni Morrison uses language so beautifully! This is a story that needs to be read over and over again.
Young Pecola Breedlove really believes that in order to be considered beautiful, she would have to have blue eyes. Being black, she knows that she is considered ugly in most eyes. Everything and everyone around her says that she is not as good as white little girls with blonde hair and blue eyes.
"Along with the idea of romantic love, she was introduced to another - physical beauty. Probably the most destructive ideas in the history of human thought. Both originated in envy, thrived in insecurity, and ended in disillusion. In equating physical beauty with virtue, she stripped her mind, bound it, and collected self-contempt by the heap. She forgot lust and simple caring for. She regarded love as possessive mating, and romance as the goal of the spirit. It would be for her a well-spring from which she would draw the most destructive emotions, deceiving the lover and seeking to imprison the beloved, curtailing freedom in every way."
Toni Morrison is an excellent author. This book really changed my perspective. The story is told through the eyes of a black, eleven-year-old who prays for her eys to turn blue so that she will be as beauitful and beloved as all the blond, blue-eyed children in America. Powerful and unforgettable.
Each night Pecola prayed for blue eyes. In her eleven years, no one had ever noticed Pecola. But with blue eyes, she thought, everything would be different. She would be so pretty that her parents would stop fighting. Her father would stop drinking. Her brother would stop running away. If only she could be beautiful. If only people would look at her. When someone finally did, it was her father, drunk. He raped her. Soon she would bear his child ...
It truly is difficult to know where to begin with Toni Morrisons The Bluest Eye because it was certainly not an easy read. So perhaps Ill have to begin with a narcissistic approach and reveal that the book caught my attention because it was on a banned book list somewhere. Maybe it reached that futile list for what some might deem strong sexual content as the first two lines of the introduction will reveal to you: Quiet as its kept, there were no marigolds in the fall of 1941. We thought, at the time, that it was because Pecola was having her fathers baby that the marigolds did not grow. YesI would not put it in an elementary school childs hand as assigned reading; however, I would never keep it out of the hands of high school or even junior high school students either because it is a good learning tool.
Additionally, the afterward (written in 1993) helped since Toni Morrison explained that rape is (or once was) routinely given. (215) Im still not entirely sure if the character, Soaphead Church, needed to be a pedophile in order to deliver the message that Pecola wanted blue eyes and that shed be the only one able to see it. In the afterward, Toni Morrison also noted how the phrase, Quiet as its kept, had a dual purpose. 1) To introduce the scenario that the facts are being seen through children; and 2) it was supposed to invite the reader into a sort of secret. Again, narcissistic, but the latter didnt work for me since my first thought with the explanation of being put outdoors was of one entering a new world.
I suppose the gist of the story could be seen through the word: Love. In autumn, Claudia expresses how her mother was tough on her and her sister but it was love nonetheless. There was a mistaken love that both Pecolas mother and father accepted and displayed. Then there was the complete lack of love, which Pecola experienced.
This thin novel is full of pain and wonder. It is the story of three young black girls living in Ohio in the 1940s, one yearning for blue eyes to make her beautiful. It is beautifully written and heartbreaking to read.