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Toni Morrison’s “The Bluest Eye” Quotes (25 Quotes)


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  • She became, and her process of becoming was like most of ours: she developed a hatred for things that mystified or obstructed her; acquired virtues that were easy to maintain; assigned herself a role in the scheme of things; and harked back to simpler times for gratification.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • She left me the way people leave a hotel room. A hotel room is a place to be when you are doing something else. Of itself it is of no consequence to one's major scheme. A hotel room is convenient. But its convenience is limited to the time you need it while you are in that particular town on that particular business; you hope it is comfortable, but prefer, rather, that it be anoymous. It is not, after all, where you live.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • Along with the idea of romantic love, she was introduced to another--physical beauty. Probably the most destructive ideas in the history of human thought. Both originated in envy, thrived in insecurity, and ended in disillusion.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • She missed -- without knowing what she missed-- paints and crayons
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • Anger is better. There is a sense of being in anger. A reality and presence. An awareness of worth. It is a lovely surging.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")


  • Sunk in the grass of an empty lot on a spring Saturday, I split the stems of milkweed and thought about ants and peach pits and death and where the world went when I closed my eyes.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • But to find out the truth about how dreams die, one should never take the word of the dreamer.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • The fire seemed to live, go down, or die according to its own schemata. In the morning, however, it always saw fit to die.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • Each member of the family in his own cell of consciousness, each making his own patchwork quilt of reality - collecting fragments of experience here, pieces of information there. From the tiny impressions gleaned from one another, they created a sense of belonging and tried to make do with the way they found each other.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • There is a difference between being put out and being put outdoors. If you are put out, you go somewhere else; if you are outdoors, there is no place to go. The distinction was subtle but final. Outdoors was the end of something, an irrevocable, physical fact, defining and complementing our metaphysical condition... Dead doesn't change, and outdoors is here to stay.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • Each night, without fail, she prayed for blue eyes. Fervently, for a year she had prayed. Although somewhat discouraged, she was not without hope. To have something as wonderful as that would take a long, long time.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • They had stared at her with great uncomprehending eyes. Eyes that questioned nothing and asked everything. Unblinking and unabashed, they stared up at her. The end of the world lay in their eyes, and the beginning, and all the waste in bewteen.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • I had only one desire: to dismember it. To see of what it was made, to discover the dearness, to find the beauty, the desirability that had escaped me, but apparently only me.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • They seemed to have taken all of their smoothly cultivated ignorance, their exquisitely learned self-hatred, their elaborately designed hopelessness and sucked it all up into a fiery cone of scorn that had burned for ages in the hollows of their minds - cooled - and spilled over lips of outrage, consuming whatever was in its path.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")

  • If happiness is anticipation with certainty, we were happy.
    (Toni Morrison, "The Bluest Eye")


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