What is the significance of the title of Toni Morrison's novel The Bluest Eye?

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Payal Khullar eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The title of Toni Morrison's novel The Bluest Eye is very significant to the main theme of the novel. Pecola Breedlove, the central character of The Bluest Eye, is a Black-American girl who longs for blue eyes (in fact, the bluest eyes!). This is because she feels that if she has blue eyes, she will look extremely beautiful, her parents will not fight and, in simple terms, all her problems will come to an end. Pecola's idea of beauty and happiness actually stems from the pressures of White standards of beauty, i.e. white skin and blue eyes, on the Black-American community. Through Pecola, Morrison presents the harsh truth of Black-American community's lost faith and belief in their own beauty and perfectness. Pecola’s deep desire for bluest eyes shows that she accepts that being black isn’t being beautiful and happy. In this novel, Morrison doesn't focus on the ideology of Whites, or the interaction of Whites and Blacks. She is more interested to depict the interaction of members of Black community with each other, and how the Blacks see themselves.

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The Bluest Eye

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