The Standards Of Beauty In Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye

1086 Words 5 Pages
Throughout The Bluest Eye, “Adults, older girls, shops, magazines, newspapers, window signs—all the world had agreed that a blue-eyed, yellow-haired, pink-skinned doll was what every girl child treasured” (page 20). The characters live in an the mid-1900s where only girls with blonde-hair, blue-eyes, and white skin are considered beautiful. Throughout The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison explains that beauty is on the inside. In the novel, the influence of popular media is unveiled through the effect of advertisements on the standards of beauty that appear in the text, which are based on one’s skin color, eye color and hair color. The effect of advertisement on girls in the story is negative, because of their reactions to what society deems beautiful. …show more content…
Pecola is bullied about the darkness of her skin throughout the novel, mostly by the boys at school when they chant “‘Black e mo. Black e mo’” at her (180). Also, near the end of the novel, people see Pecola walking down the street “ flail[ing] her arms like a bird” (page 204). She is doing this because she has become so obsessed with the standards of beauty and can no longer take the consistent looks and way people are treating her. A final way the novel shows how Pecola is affected by these standards is how she talks to and holds conversations with herself. In the very last chapter of the book, she starts talking to herself and believing that she has blue eyes in order to be accepted. However in the end she believes, “Everybody’s jealous. Every time I look at somebody, they look off, ” thinking that she has been given blue eyes and now everyone is jealous of her (page 210). Pecola is negatively affected by society’s exploitation of the standards of beauty.
In the end, The Bluest Eye explains the standards of beauty in the 1940s through the advertisements on common objects that people use in everyday life. Throughout the book, society’s definition of beauty shows up in different experiences the characters face throughout the story.Therefore, the overall takeaway is the effect of media on the standards of

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