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Please comment on the significance of the point of view in The Bluest Eye.

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marystreech | eNoter

Posted November 19, 2011 at 1:05 PM via web

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Please comment on the significance of the point of view in The Bluest Eye.

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted November 20, 2011 at 6:32 PM (Answer #1)

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I personally think that the point of view of this excellent and challenging novel is the most interesting aspect of this story. The character of Claudia MacTeer is the "I" of the first person point of view, though it is important to realise that at various stages in the novel she relates incidents to us from the eyes of a nine year old girl and then as an adult who is looking back at what has happend to her.

The adult narrator is used by Morrison to indicate points of reflection for Claudia when she is able to use her vantage point as an adult to understand more than she did as a nine-year-old. A perfect example is when Claudia reflects on the way Pecola was shunned by both Claudia and her community and she recognises that Pecola was mistreated as a result.

However, in addition to this first person retrospective narrator, at the same time, there is a third-person omniscient narrator who fills us in on certain points of information, such as the backgrounds of Cholly and Pauline. Such omniscient narration allows us to comprehend how Pauline and Cholly have ended up hating themselves so profoundly.

However, the main focus of the narrative is that of the narratino of Claudia as she experiences flashbacks as an adult to her life as a young girl. This pervasive narration is evidenced by the dividing of the novel into four seasons, as nine year old girls would use them to chart the passing of time rather than days, weeks or months.

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