"The Bluest Eye" By Toni Morrison The Perception Of "Beauty".

1045 words - 4 pages

As the world continues to thrive and prosper, it also begins to create perceptions on life. One of the most recognized is the perception of "beauty", and what "beauty" is. Toni Morrison, the author of "The Bluest Eye" shows the life of the Breedloves. The Breedloves are a very ugly family, not only on the outside, but on the inside as well. The family has many mental issues in which they do not control, the fact that the mother does not express love to her children, and that there is violence, and sex in the family. All of these things contribute to the consequences the family would later endure. The family has many other issues as well, as it views that whiteness is the standard of beauty, the difference of seeing versus being seen, and satisfying appetites verses repressing. The perceptions, that the eyes should be blue, and appetites the family has all change the family and make it what it is, dysfunctional.Whiteness is the standard of beauty, according to the characters in "The Bluest Eye", as they all get influenced by others, such as Sherly Temple, and her school friends like Maureen Peal. Pecola, Ms. Breedloves daughters image of beauty is Shirley Temple. White, blonde, tall, and blue eyes, the perception given to her, and unless she achieves these things, she will not be beautiful. Ms. Breedlove also has a perception of beauty, as she belives that the white lady she works for has the nicest and prettiest house which she compares to her own. Although the character who it effects the most is Pecola, "It had occurred to Pecola some time ago that if her eyes, those eyes that held the pictures, and knew the sights--if those eyes of hers were different, that is to say, beautiful, she herself would be different." Her eyes were ugly because of what she had witnessed in her life and family, if she had seen pretty happy things, then her eyes would absorb it and be pretty. As she intertwines love and beauty, the belief that obtaining blue eyes would induce love. Pecola would eventually attain blue eyes, but at a very significant price, her sanity.Many characters in "The Bluest Eye" are seeing rather than being seen. "We had defended ourselves since memory against everything and everybody, considered all speech a code to be broken by us, and all gestures subject to careful analysis; we had become headstrong, devious, and arrogant. Nobody paid us any attention, so we paid very good attention to ourselves. Our limitations were not known to us--not then." (pg. 83) As the Breedloves avoid to pay attention to their children, they would only see into themselfs, the things that were wrong with them. Judgements and perceptions started to arise, none of which were controlled by the parents. Pecola had an image that if she was seen with blue eyes and pretty like Shirley Temple, people wouldn't violate her sexually and mentally. People would actually see her and acknowledge her presence and respect it because of her...

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