As a key character, Pecola Breedlove shows how past history repeats itself in the living present. Pecola is a victim of her parents’ background, as Morrison states herself in the foreword of the novel ‘The extremity of Pecola’s case stemmed largely from a crippled and crippling family’ . The implication of the quotation seems to be that Pecola’s childhood and her ancestors past are integrally damaged and she can never escape. Pecola is disregarded by her parental figures, people who would typically be associated with care, which seems to be a central factor in her dysfunctional lifestyle and surroundings. The ending of the novel also seems to mirror this, as after Pecola has experienced abuse from Cholly alongside an endless stream of self -repression, it is stated that ‘the damage done was total’ (p. 202). The use adjective ‘total’ could suggest that Pecola is destined to experience an infinite lifetime of suffering due to her past being so traumatic that it continues in her present. The concept of tragedy and its consequences are summarized by Bennett and Royle ‘Tragedy tears us apart, it shatters our sense of ourselves and the worl...
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...t that it is making an explicit political statement not only about racism in contemporary US society but also about the perception of history itself .
The quotation appears to be suggesting that Morrison is not only discussing how racism exists in society at her time of writing, also how history itself seems to be constantly repeated, particularly through the projection of historical prejudice in itself. A second reading of the novel could depict how Morrison is not referring to history itself, only in context to black discrimination and how its past is most frequently repeated in the living present, rather than a vast political statement.
The consideration of how past history is actually part of the living present in The Bluest Eye seems to question whether or not characters in the novel have a fatalistic philosophy, or a sense of optimism for escaping the past.
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