Racism and Sexism in the Bluest Eye
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1790 words (5.1 double-spaced pages)
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Toni Morrison, the author of The Bluest Eye, centers her novel around two things: beauty and wealth in their relation to race and a brutal rape of a young girl by her father. Morrison explores and exposes these themes in relation to the underlying factors of black society: racism and sexism. Every character has a problem to deal with and it involves racism and/or sexism. Whether the characters are the victim or the aggressor, they can do nothing about their problem or condition, especially when concerning gender and race. Morrison's characters are clearly at the mercy of preconceived notions maintained by society. Because of these preconceived notions, the racism found in The Bluest Eye is not whites against blacks. Morrison writes about the racism of lighter colored blacks against darker colored blacks and rich blacks against poor blacks. Along with racism within the black community, sexism is exemplified both against women and against men. As Morrison investigates the racism and sexism of the community of Lorain, Ohio, she gives the reader more perspective as to why certain charact...
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...m and sexism the black community had to endure on top of racism and sexism outside of the community. She shows that racism and sexism affect everyone's preconceived notions regarding race and gender and how powerful and prevalent the notions are. Within the community, racism affects how people's views of beauty and skin can be skewed by other's racist thoughts; sexism shapes everyone in the community's reactions to different forms of rape.
Morrison, Toni. The Bluest Eye. Afterward by Toni Morrison. New York: Penguin, 2004.
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