The Bluest Eye is a novel written by Toni Morrison. It was first published in 1970. The novel follows Pecola, an African-American woman living in America in the early 1940s.
In my opinion, this book is a very important contribution towards highlighting the way black people were treated in the United States. Even during the 1960s, black people were often seen as inferior to white people. As a result, they were often subjected to racist abuse. Morrison clearly saw the need to highlight this by writing a book about the way black people were treated.
The fact that the novel was published in 1970 shows us that the author may have been very heavily influenced by the “Black is Beautiful” movement. This movement tried to encourage black people to move away from the stereotypical perception that the physical features of black people were considered ugly. Instead, black people started to focus on their own beauty, moving away from the fact that one had to be white in order to be considered beautiful.
In the novel, Pecola wishes for blue eyes, which explains the title the author has chosen for the book. As blue eyes are a unique feature of white girls, Pecola sees blue eyes as the ultimate sign of beauty. As a result, she perceives her own eye color as ugly.
This novel is a very important novel, as it does not only highlight how black people were treated, but it also shows the reader the effects that this racial mistreatment had on black people. The author wants to urge black people to be proud of their roots and their heritage, instead of striving for physical ideals dictated by white people.