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Chris Blocker

Literary snobbery and other thoughts by Chris Blocker

Currently reading

Visible Empire
Hannah Pittard
The Deptford Trilogy
Robertson Davies
Life on Mars
Jennifer Brown
The Family Under the Bridge
Natalie Savage Carlson

The Bluest Eye

The Bluest Eye - Toni Morrison Toni Morrison's debut novel is both haunting and beautiful. Right from the beginning, she tells of the tragedy that will take place and doing so certainly helps the pieces come together throughout the novel.The story is told through various viewpoints which adds significant credibility. Had Morrison stuck with the viewpoint of Pecola, the victim, the novel would've felt like it was asking for pity. Had it feel on her attacker, it obviously would've been much darker--without heart. A townsperson would've made it too distant. And so forth. Morrison chose wisely by going into all these characters' point-of-views.The language, as in any piece Morrison writes, is gorgeous. She can just write words on a page without a story and it will get published. Language, however, is probably the biggest problem with The Bluest Eye: it doesn't fit. Some characters in this book are clearly more eloquent, and I'll give the benefit of the doubt that they would use such language; however, there are many in this novel who are portrayed as barely being able to read and yet their narratives are laced with the author's silver-tongue. It doesn't make the novel any less beautiful; but it certainly makes it less effective. Taken in context however--her first novel, written as a 30-something black woman in 1960s America--I'm guessing there was great pressure, internally and externally, to create a work of greatly literary value.While Morrison doesn't quite match the power in this novel as she does with later works, The Bluest Eye is nevertheless a wonderful start to what was to become an exceptional career.