The Bluest Eye


Essay on The Bluest Eye

There are many themes that seem to run throughout this story. Each theme and conflict seems to always involve the character of Pecola Breedlove. There is the theme of finding an identity. There is also the theme of Pecola as a victim. Of all the characters in the story we can definitely sympathize with Pecola because of the many harsh circumstances she has had to go through in her lifetime. Perhaps her rape was the most tragic and dramatic experience Pecola had experiences, but nonetheless she continued her life. She eliminates her sense of ugliness, which lingers in the beginning of the story, and when she sees that she has blue eyes now she changes her perspective on life. She believes that these eyes have been given to her magically and in some respects her eyes begin to corrupt her as an individual. The story begins to take a turn and the reader realizes that the main character has begun to entirely rely on self-image in order to build confidence. This leads to the question of how significant are the "Blue eyes" to society and how does the theme of beauty and ugliness linger throughout the story. With this in mind, how does this make Pecola a victim of society and a victim in herself?
If any person can be credited for creating the obsession of beauty that Pecola builds it is Pauline (Pecola?s mother). Pecola experiences many insecurities and it can definitely be said that many of these are because of the way that Pauline acts in society and around Pecola. It was stated in the story that Pauline would always go to the movies and rate the characters on their beauty. This is one example that shows the obsession that Pauline has with beauty and looks. This rubbed off on to her daughter and that is where Pecola received her lack of self-esteem. It is clear that Pecola idolizes the ideals of being beautiful. It is interesting that Pecola is not the person telling the story in this book, and it is Claudia instead. It seems that the author wants the reader to build an immense amount of sympathy for Pecola because it would just be less effective if Pecola was telling the story. If it Pecola that was narrating in many parts then it would be more difficult to see her as a "total victim".
The structure and way this book is organized is a good clue of how Morrison wants us to see Pecola?s and all black peoples situations. Instead of ordinary chapters, this book is organized by season. This might be implying that this isn?t a story that has a beginning and an end?it is an ongoing one. A season is a reoccurring phenomenon, which a society nor any individual can get around. Perhaps this is what is trying to be said about Pecola?s situation because she is truly trapped. The culture that Pecola is in has very little future and hope, and pretty much everything that has happened once will happen again. In other words Pecola will always be a victim and more circumstances will come along which will push her further towards being a "total victim".
Throughout the story there is a strong sense of abandonment on Pecola?s part. She is a lonely character that is heavily influenced by society and what it thinks. Pecola is very concerned on meeting the standard in society despite her past life. She is determined but in some respects this is one of the downfalls to her character. "Why, she wonders, do people cal them weeds? She though they were pretty". Mr. Yacobowski humiliates her, and she passes the dandelions and thinks, "They are ugly and they are most definitely weeds". This shows how Pecola can easily be manipulated by others and society. In a sense, Pecola has transferred society?s dislike for her to the dandelions. She cannot accept the fact that she is not wanted. At one point in the story the narrator says, "We tried to see [Pecola] without looking at her, and never went near. Not because she was absurd or repulsive, or because we were frightened, but because we had failed her. Our flowers never grew so we avoided her forever. The years folded up like a pocket-handkerchief. Sammy left town long