Proceedings of The Global Conference on Women’s Studies
Development Of Female Identity In A Complex Racial And Social Framework In Toni Morrison’s Novels:The Bluest Eye And Sula
The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison’s first published novel that saw the light of day in 1970, is a very controversial piece of work, discussing the sensitive and disturbing topics of incest, racism and physical and mental abuse. It shows what kind of irreparable consequences the racial stereotypes and prejudices may have when they impact the psychological development of a young girl.
Sula, Morrison’s second novel that was published in 1973, tells the story of the strong and unusual friendship that influenced the development of two very contrasting female personalities. It illustrates the importance of sisterhood, of women sticking together through the darkest of times and how that might be the solution to overcoming the complex racial and social circumstances surrounding the lives of African Americans.
In this paper I will attempt to analyse all the challenges that the women in these two novels had to face while trying to develop their identities. I will look into the complex racial and social framework that made their path to the development of identity difficult and eventually I will examine Morrison’s possible suggestions of how to prevent the racial and social prejudices from affecting the women’s lives in the future.
Keywords: African Americans, discrimination, female development, racism, stereotypes.