How do you account for Pecola's low self-esteem and her quest for blue eyes in The Bluest Eye?

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bmadnick eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Pecola's family never gives her the love and support a child needs. Her mother is abusive and negligent, concerned only with her own lack of self-esteem. Pecola's father rapes her, thinking she is her mother at a younger age. Like her mother, Pecola wants to be beautiful, defining beauty according to the white world's standards. Having blue eyes is at the core of feeling beautiful to Pecola. She is consumed with having blue eyes, feeling this will bring her the love she has never received. Her obsession leads to her madness.