The Bluest Eye

The Bluest Eye

A Novel

Book - 1970
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The Bluest Eye , published in 1970, is the first novel written by Toni Morrison, winner of the 1993 Nobel Prize in Literature.

It is 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, and the tragedy of its fulfillment.
Publisher: New York : Holt, Rinehart and Winston, c1970
ISBN: 9780375411557
0375411550
Characteristics: 164 pages ;,22 cm.

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DanielJNickolas
Sep 30, 2016

The Bluest Eye is a secret, a myth, a gossip whispered with the hope that someone will hear it before it is too late. From its opening - the dissolving text of a Dick and Jane children’s book - to the yet unnamed narrator’s first spoken words “Quiet as it’s kept”, Morrison gives the impression of whispering to the reader a secret hidden behind the actions of everyday life; a truth about the perceptions and beliefs of what is beautiful, and what is not.

TSCPL_ChrisB Jun 02, 2016

Toni Morrison's debut novel is both haunting and beautiful. Right from the beginning, she tells of the tragedy that will take place and doing so certainly helps the pieces come together throughout the novel.
The story is told through various viewpoints which adds significant credibility. Had Morrison stuck with the viewpoint of Pecola, the victim, the novel would've felt like it was asking for pity. Had it feel on her attacker, it obviously would've been much darker--without heart. A townsperson would've made it too distant. And so forth. Morrison chose wisely by going into all these characters' point-of-views.
The language, as in any piece Morrison writes, is gorgeous. She can just write words on a page without a story and it will get published. Language, however, is probably the biggest problem with The Bluest Eye: it doesn't fit. Some characters in this book are clearly more eloquent, and I'll give the benefit of the doubt that they would use such language; however, there are many in this novel who are portrayed as barely being able to read and yet their narratives are laced with the author's silver-tongue. It doesn't make the novel any less beautiful; but it certainly makes it less effective. Taken in context however--her first novel, written as a 30-something black woman in 1960s America--I'm guessing there was great pressure, internally and externally, to create a work of greatly literary value.
While Morrison doesn't quite match the power in this novel as she does with later works, The Bluest Eye is nevertheless a wonderful start to what was to become an exceptional career.

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nidus
May 02, 2016

There is a sharing of a point of view of a person of color that is accessible to a white male to learn about a Black girl growing up in the poverty level South. This is a really fine book.

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IMEN MIZI
Aug 04, 2015

This was a great book, but a little hard to understand. It is a book that gets you really thinking about the affects of social media and racism.

hbrown10011 Jun 25, 2015

Toni Morrison is so fly that three-quarters of the time I don't understand what the heck she's saying. But this novel I found quite accessible and brilliantly written.

Wished I could've said the same about dearly "Beloved."

kimberlyn_0 Aug 18, 2014

this book was exiting and powerful. how she describe- in a certain way scared me and made me feel sympathy for Pecola.

c
crystal_M
Aug 19, 2013

The Bluest Eye – Toni Morrison
I was a little skeptical about reading The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison, the cover did not grab my attention at first but I decided to give it a try and I’m glad I did. The tittle had me thinking before I even opened the book, I wondered how the title could relate to this little black girl on the cover. The story revolves around Pecola, a little black girl in America who yearns for blue eyes because she thinks that having blue eyes would make her life better, she thinks blue eyes will make her beautiful, and it would change the way her peers and her parents perceives her. The author got her messages across in a unique style of writing; she splits the book into different seasons & talks about each character one by one for the readers to learn a little bit more about them. The Bluest Eye show the ways in which internalized white beauty standards deforms the lives of black girls and women. Implicit messages that whiteness is superior are everywhere, including the white baby given to Claudia, the idealization of Shirley Temple and the idealization of white movies. The person who suffers most from white beauty standards is, of course, Pecola. She connects beauty with being loved and believes that if she possesses blue eyes, the cruelty in her life will be replaced by affection and respect. This hopeless desire leads ultimately to madness, suggesting that the fulfillment of the wish for white beauty may be even more tragic than the wish impulse itself. I would recommend everyone who’s sixteen or older to read this book because it’s a little bit graphic at times but I truly believe that all races and genders could relate to this book. It’s a great read, you will not regret it.

j
jayfinest
Nov 22, 2012

This has been one of the best books I've ever read. It is beautifully written and captures our true obsession with beauty and trying to fit in. Very powerful.

madison382 Aug 20, 2012

One of the saddest book I have ever read.

Blue_Baboon_132 Aug 20, 2012

this definately explains the crimes that some people have to go through

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grace0130
Jun 29, 2012

grace0130 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

EuSei Jun 03, 2011

EuSei thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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21221010888029
Mar 13, 2010

21221010888029 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Summary

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Blue_Baboon_132 Aug 20, 2012

LIFE!!!

tt14 Jul 26, 2012

In the novel The Bluest Eye, the most significant example of a person having low self-esteem is Pecola. In The Bluest Eye, the reader learns that Pecola was raped and impregnated by her father in the family kitchen. Toni Morrison describes Cholly’s thoughts at the time of the rape as being excited. The narrator, Claudia, comments, “...the silence of her stunned throat was better than Pauline’s easy laughter had been” (Morrison 162). Pecola’s silence is an example of her being powerless and a contributing factor to her low self-esteem. Pecola feels that her future is hopeless and she feels betrayed by the rape at the hands of her father. This is not how a father is supposed to treat his daughter. A father should talk to his daughter, give her advice, and make her feel that she is worth something. Pecola feels alone and powerless and that she can not trust anyone.

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EuSei Jun 03, 2011

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

EuSei Jun 03, 2011

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

Quotes

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Blue_Baboon_132 Aug 20, 2012

THE BLUEST EYE

tt14 Jun 18, 2012

“He stood up and in a vexed whiny voice shouted at Cholly, ‘Tell that bitch she get her money and get the fuck out of here!’”

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