What does the narrator mean by saying that Cholly was "dangerously free"?  

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In The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison, Cholly Breedlove is Pecola's father. We are first introduced to his character at the very beginning of the novel, when the narrator tells us that Pecola's father got her pregnant. The novel is told out of chronological order, and the majority is told by another young girl Claudia, whose parents took Pecola in for a time.

The quote above, characterizing Cholly as "dangerously free," comes near the end of the chapter that gives the reader Cholly's backstory and upbringing. This characterization comes as a result of the complicated and painful journey of Cholly's life. The narrator says that "the pieces of Cholly's life could become coherent only in the head of a musician" (159). This seems to imply that the many contradictions and oppositions that have made up Cholly's life can only be captured by music—a language without words, perhaps a space where the paradox of pain and life can be...

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