Toni Morrison's The Bluest Eye

By Harold Bloom | Go to book overview

MICHAEL AWKWARD


"The Evil of Fulfillment":
Scapegoating and Narration in The Bluest Eye

I had found my tongue.

— Toni Morrison
The Bluest Eye

... all the voice in answer he could wake
Was but the mocking echo of his own.

* * * *

He would cry out on life, that what it wants
Is not its own love back in copy speech,
But counter-love, original response.
And nothing ever came of what
he cried ...

— Robert Frost
"The Most of It"

... just as the male artist's struggle against his precursor takes the form of what [Harold] Bloom calls revisionary swerves, flights, misreadings, so the female writer's battle for self-creation involves her in a revisionary process. Her battle, however, is not against her (male) precursor's reading of the world but against the reading of ber.

— Sandra Gilbert and Susan Gubar,
The Madwoman in the Attic

In the previous chapter I attempted to chart Zora Neale Hurston's successful denigration of the novel. Their Eyes Were Watching God provides particularly compelling evidence in support of Hurston's claim that "everything that [the

____________________
From Inspiriting Influence: Tradition, Revision, and Afro-American Women's Novels. © 1989 by Michael Awkward.

-65-

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