The Bluest Eye

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Akeem Wynn
September 23, 2010
English 1A

In the novel, The Bluest Eye, the Breedlove family were the most frowned upon and talked about family due in part to Cholly, the patriarch’s, violence toward his family. He quarreled and physically fought his wife habitually, successfully burned down their house and even fathered a stillborn with his own daughter. Some characters in the novel say that Cholly is just a crazy old drunk who doesn’t care about anyone and, since he is the only one causing all of the drama in his family, should be the one to blame for the chaos. Yet, Cholly had a very rough childhood filled with fear, hatred, and abandonment. Also, his wife Polly’s behavior toward him may also play a huge part into his violent nature. The novel goes back into Cholly and Polly’s past to give readers a closer look at their backgrounds and to let the readers decide who or what is really to blame for the Breedlove’s horrible family lifestyle. The novel does not point the finger, it just highlight’s why certain people may be to blame. Cholly Breedlove‘s humiliating childhood memories and his own wife’s hatred towards him are the real culprits to the drama circulating the Breedlove family because Cholly does not know how to not let these things affect him.

Cholly Breedlove’s childhood in Georgia was far from perfect. Both his mother and father abandoned him as an infant so his great Aunt Jimmy took care of him until she died when Cholly was only fourteen. It was at this age when Cholly faced some humiliating encounters. “When he was still very young, Cholly had been surprised in some bushes by two white men while he was newly but earnestly engaged in eliciting sexual pleasure from a little country girl.”(pg. 42) They not only surprised him, they shone a flashlight on him and stood there to watch him make love to the young girl. This experience must have been very traumatizing for Cholly because in order for him to let out his frustrations, he lashed out...
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