Morrison's Bluest Eye Essay: Misdirected Anger Depicted

1179 words - 5 pages

Misdirected Anger Depicted in The Bluest Eye

In The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison shows that anger is healthy and that it is not something to be feared; those who are not able to get angry are the ones who suffer the most.  She criticizes Cholly, Polly, Claudia, Soaphead Church, the Mobile Girls, and Pecola because these blacks in her story wrongly place their anger on themselves, their own race, their family, or even God, instead of being angry at those they should have been angry at: whites.

            Pecola Breedlove suffered the most because she was the result of having others' anger dumped on her, and she herself was unable to get angry.  When Geraldine yells at her to get out of her house, Pecola's eyes were fixed on the "pretty" lady and her "pretty" house.  Pecola does not stand up to Maureen Peal when she made fun of her for seeing her dad naked but instead lets Freida and Claudia fight for her.  Instead of getting mad at Mr. Yacobowski for looking down on her, she directed her anger toward the dandelions she once thought were beautiful.  However, "the anger will not hold"(50), and the feelings soon gave way to shame.  Pecola was the sad product of having others' anger placed on her:  "All of our waste we dumped on her and she absorbed.  And all of our beauty, which was hers first and which she gave to us"(205).  They felt beautiful next to her ugliness, wholesome next to her uncleanness, her poverty made them generous, her weakness made them strong, and her pain made them happier.

            When Pecola's father, Cholly Breedlove, was caught as a teenager in a field with Darlene by two white men, "never did he once consider directing his hatred toward the hunters"(150), rather her directed his hatred towards the girl because hating the white men would "consume" him. 

He was powerless against the white men and was unable to protect Darlene from them as well. 

This caused his to hate her for being in the situation with him and for realizing how powerless her really was.  Also, Cholly felt that any misery his daughter suffered was his fault, and looking in to Pecola's loving eyes angered him because her wondered, "What could her do for her - ever?  What give her?  What say to her?"(161)  Cholly's failures led him to hate those that he failed, most of all his family.

            Pecola's mother, Polly Breedlove, also wrongly placed her anger on her family.  As a result of having a deformed foot, Polly had always had a feeling of unworthiness and separateness. 

With her own children, "sometimes I'd catch myself hollering at them and beating them, but I couldn't seem to stop"(124).  She stopped taking care of her own children and her home and took care of a white family and their home.  She found praise, love, and acceptance with the Fisher family, and it is for these reasons that she stayed with them.  She had been deprived of such feelings from her family when growing up and in turn deprived her own family of...

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