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The Bluest Eye

The Bluest Eye


by Toni Morrison

The Bluest Eye Theme of Jealousy

Feelings of jealousy and envy permeate The Bluest Eye. From Claudia and Frieda's jealousy of Maureen Peal to Pauline envying the uppity women of Lorain, Ohio, women seem to experience envy all day, every day. In some instances, jealousy can bring women closer together, as when the MacTeer sisters bond over their mutual hatred of Maureen. At other times, jealousy keeps girls and women from being friends with one another.

Questions About Jealousy

  1. Who is jealous of whom in the novel? Who is never jealous of anyone?
  2. Are women the only jealous characters in the novel, or are men jealous, too?
  3. How does jealousy impact the lives of characters that experience it?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Pauline Breedlove learns how to be jealous from watching Hollywood movies.

Many aspects of girl culture promote jealousy.

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