Discuss the narrative strategies used by Toni Morrison in The Bluest Eye.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

One of the key narrative strategies Toni Morrison deploys in The Bluest Eye is the inclusion of the "Dick and Jane" prologue. Dick and Jane was a series of books for children learning to read, characterized by simple sentences like "See Jane run." Morrison's riff on the Dick and Jane books at the outset of a novel that explores racism and sexual abuse strikes an interesting note. Given that the story follows the formative experiences of young black girls, the Dick and Jane prologue underlines the process of education. But it also, crucially, marks the difference between popular images of what was seen to be wholesome, healthy American childhood and the experiences of Claudia, Frieda, and Pecola. Growing up aware of the disparity between this public idealized image and their own self-image, the girls—and in particular Pecola—internalize the prevailing racism of the culture, seeing themselves as fundamentally different from popular images of happiness and beauty. This idea also inspires the...

(The entire section contains 4 answers and 838 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

Posted on