“The Bluest Eye” by Toni Morrison: A Must Read


Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye is a novel that forces the imagination to reach into the mind to find Jesus, the giver of imperfect humanity. Pecola Breedlove is that symbol. She is not the tragic character many believe her to be; she is, I am convinced, a symbol of the Divine. She yearns for blues eyes. Pecola believes blue eyes are a representation of what her community has told her of what is best and beautiful in the world, the thing that will cause her to prosper. So, is the problem  of yearning for blues eyes one created by Pecola, or is the problem one that has been put on Pecola?   Pecola is not “ugly.” “Ugly” was put on her in the same way poverty is put on many who live in poverty or suffer abuse. Pecola did not do that; therefore, she is not tragic. Her gift is that she survives– although the evil of humanity  dumped its “garbage onto her.” Jesus did the same thing; he survived the dumping. The revelatory message for me is this:  Those who are abused, disenfranchised in a society are not the tragic ones; it is the abuser, the oppressor who is tragic. The Bluest Eye is a superb work. It forces one to travel deep, into and underneath the human spirt into the Divine. That I see in the little girl who yearns for blue eyes.



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