In the autumn section of the bluest eye, by Toni Morrison, the most intriguing passage that I have read occurs in the pages 33-34, beginning with; “Letting herself breathe easily now… ” and ending with; “those pretty eyes. ” This passage is particularly unique in the sense that it exposes a lot about Pecola’s situation at that time, her character, her feelings and emotions as well as her desires. The writer uses a number of different literary devices to convey these elements of Pecola’s character.
Throughout the passage there has been a conspicuous repetition of the words ‘eye’ , ‘picture’ , ‘sight’ and ‘faces’. It seems like the writer is trying to make a connection to racism through this emphasis. I get this idea because racism is a very superficial, external subject of discrimination and it is due to the external picture or sight of someone that triggers this form of it. Relating this to Pecola’s character you can see that she is a product of racism, her feeling of inadequacy due to her features is very apparent in this passage.
In the fourth paragraph of page 33, “Little parts of her body faded away… they were always left,” shows how much she is despised by what she refers to as her ugliness; pg 34 “as long as she was ugly”, an idea implanted into her and many other black girls by the whites. In the fourth paragraph of page 33, “Little parts of her body faded away… they were always left,” This is specifically a very attractive part of the passage because it has incorporated with it a lot about different themes and ideas like cultural identity.
The quote is about Pecola closing her eyes and trying to imagine each of her body parts disappearing until her eyes are left and she cannot make them disappear. I think this brings up the idea of identity and the fact that whatever or however much you do you can never escape your true identity. In the piece, it is Pecola who tries so hard to run away from who she is but there is a barricade that doesn’t let her do so. The second paragraph of page 34 has had an immense effect on me during my reading. From,” it had occurred to Pecola…
” to “those pretty eyes. ” If you read this passage you will definitely notice that the writer repeats the word ‘different’ side by side with a positive word like ‘beautiful’. The writer does this, I think, to reinforce the idea of indirect racism that existed at that time, the kids were so brain washed and sampled to believe that the perfect model of everything was a white figure with blue eyes and blonde hair that they blamed the problems in their life for not being in the range of the elite or perfect.
In my opinion, Pecola feels this way and believes that any change or difference to her image that would make her more beautiful (in white terms) would change their situation at home as well as everything else in a positive way. I think this is the justification because as soon as the paragraph ended there was an excerpt from the childrens book (Dick and Jane) talking about a few kids with blue eyes having fun with each other to show continuity from the previous paragraph. “Long hours she sat looking in the mirror, trying to discover the secret of the ugliness…
” I think that this line carries a lot of irony because usually little girls spend long hours in front of the mirror admiring their beauty not despising it. This also exposes a lot about the fact that she was a victim of racism both direct and indirect as I had mentioned. To finalize the essay, I would say that the excerpt that I chose is again special to me because I am able to relate to it very personally, because obviously I as well do not fit into the description of the perfect boy. “What is the true and sincere beauty? ” – is the question that has been raised in my head.