an eye altogether alien and impersonal

ida2

Senior Member
Persian - Iran
In the following paragraph, what does " an eye altogether alien and impersonal " mean?

It was not only colored people who praised John, since they could not, John felt, in any case really know; but white people also said it, in fact had said it first and said it still. It was when John was five years old and in the first grade that he was first noticed; and since he was noticed by an eye altogether alien and impersonal, he began to perceive, in wild uneasiness, his individual existence.

Source: Go Tell It on the Mountain, by James Baldwin
 
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