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Explain the opening phrase of the prologue of "The Bluest Eye": the narrator says...

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oliviamull2 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 14, 2008 at 2:21 AM via web

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Explain the opening phrase of the prologue of "The Bluest Eye": the narrator says  "quiet as it's kept"? What does this phrase suggest?

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ladyvols1 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted November 14, 2008 at 9:05 AM (Answer #1)

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The term at the beginning of the second half of the “prologue” is narrated by Claudia.  It is important because the term "Quiet as it's kept" grounds the act of storytelling in a world of gossip, of talk between women, of secrets shared.”  These words bring the reader and the novel into a partnership, and the expression itself is a common phrase used by the black women of Morrison's childhood. “Morrison is using spoken Black-American English to enrich America's literary language; here, specifically, the reader is being invited to learn about Pecola's tragedy, and the opening four words indicate that the story is both little-known and important enough to share.”

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