Discrimination In The Bluest Eye By Toni Morrison

Decent Essays
Discrimination, perhaps one of the biggest faults found in humanity, has affected the world for the entirety of mankind. It has been the root of wars, attacks, massacres, and movements that have sown the seeds of this world’s history and helped society grow into what it is today. It has caused a number of people to be victimized for their race, religion, gender, and sexual orientation. In this nation alone, slavery and oppression of African Americans were the results of racial discrimination for hundreds of years. And while the United States has made significant progress in overcoming racism and discrimination by working to create a safe haven and a nation where all are equal, the memories and effects of racial oppression and victimization …show more content…
Throughout the novel Pecola is the victim of harassment and humiliation from her peers and suffers abuse from her own father. She believes that her “ugliness” and “blackness” are the root of her problems. Living in a society where the equivalent of beautiful is a blonde-haired, blue-eyed woman, Caucasian actresses are the center of media attention, and nearly every little girls’ doll resembles a stereotypical “white girl,” The beauty standards caused by racism allow Pecola to develop and complete obsession with having blue eyes, eventually destroying her physical and mental health (Kubitschek 40).1 Pecola comes to the conclusion that if she had blue eyes she would no longer be ugly, and her problems would become non-existent (Crayton 68). Eventually, Pecola loses her sanity and truly believes she has blue eyes, at one point stating, “Just because I got blue eyes, bluer than theirs, they’re prejudiced” (Morrison, Bluest 197). Just as Pecola was drastically affected by these biased standards of beauty, many African American girls during this time also faced similar issues. Through Pecola, Morrison is able to illustrate the self-loathing and inability to accept one’s self that many girls and women struggled …show more content…
In her novel Beloved, main character Sethe is used to exemplify the legacy of slavery (Crayton 112) and the horrors that occurred during this completely immoral and unethical time; and to express how truly horrid and gruesome life was for those enslaved in the South. After fleeing to Ohio with her children, Sethe believes she is safe and finally free. Shortly after her escape, she discovers that her former slave owner, “schoolteacher,” is in the area looking for her. The simple thought of surrendering her family to such a horrible man terrifies Sethe and she is willing to do anything to prevent not only herself, but also her children, from returning to Sweet Home and reliving the nightmares of slavery. After contemplating and weighing her options, Sethe decides that the only definite way to protect her children from being returned to slavery is to kill them. She is only successful in killing one of her children, a baby girl, and is haunted by her actions throughout the novel. While many would view her decision to murder her own child as an act of insanity, by looking at the matter from Sethe’s perspective, it is simple to see that her actions were not psychotic or insane, but rather an extreme act of love and sacrifice for her children. In the novel,

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