The Results of Celie’s Physical and Mental Abuse In 1982 Alice Walker titled her Pulitzer Prize Winning novel, The Color Purple, which is symbolically meant to reflect radiance and majesty (Columbia). It is a story, entirely conveyed through letters, of one young black girl’s struggle to escape the brutal and degrading treatment by men, which had become a constant part of her life. Instead of focusing on race throughout the novel Walker accords “greater importance to power, the power to be, to concretize one’s self, as to mold others” (Dieke 102). This completely unbalanced power ultimately leaves Celie feeling alone and controlled, which affects her relationships with men and influences her relationship with women, mainly Shug Avery. The horrifying effects of rape and what Celie thought was incest so greatly scarred her for the rest of her life that she lost the ability to love, became confused about her sexuality, and subconsciously denied her right to an identity.
However, a movement called “womanisim” supported black women writers. Womanisim is different from feminism in many ways, with the main difference being that womanisim celebrates the culture, traditions and the characteristics of blacks. The word womanism was first introduced by the famous writer Alice Walker in her short story in 1979 titled “Coming Apart”. Walker called the wife in her story a womanist (Coleman 2), explaining the extensively at the beginning of her In Search of our Mother’s Garden: Womanist. 1.
Toni Cade Bambara, in her writings, has helped to change the image of black women. Bambara presents a very descriptive picture of what life was like for blacks, particularly women, in the North and in the South. The world, in Bambara’s stories, is seen through the eyes of the black woman. Bambara presents the black woman’s struggle to overcome stereotyping, oppression, and obstacles. Black female writers have become increasingly aware of the negative stereotyping and oppression suffered by black women.
), Sexual violence. Farmington Hills, MI: Greenhaven Press. Gilmartin, P. (1994). Rape, incest, and child abuse: Consequences and recovery. New York, NY: Garland Publishing, Inc. Hursch, C. J.
Walker’s novels communicate the psychology of a Black woman under the Western social order, touch on the “exoticism of Black women” and challenge stereotypes molded by the white men in power (Bobo par. 24). In The Color Purple Walker illustrates the life of a woman in an ordinary Black family in the rural South; in his article “Matriarchal Themes in Black Family Literature”, Rubin critiques that Walker emphasizes not only that the Black female is oppressed within society, but also that external oppression causes her to internalize her inferiority. Every theme in Walker’s writings is given through the eyes of a Black woman; by using her personal experiences to develop her short stories and novels, Walker gives the Black woman a voice in literature. Walker demonstrates through her writings that the oppression of Black women is both internal and external.
The Case of Megan Kanka. Perverts and predators: the making of sexual offending laws (p. 86-91). Lanham, Md. : Rowman & Littlefield. In Class Theories, Crim 130.
JSTOR. Web. 19 Nov 2011. hooks, bell. Ain’t I A Woman: black women and feminism. Boston MA: South End Press, 1989.
New York: Franklin Watts, INC, 1972. p.3 3. Janet, Women’s Rights, 54. Bibliography 1. Boylan, Anne M. The Origins of Women’s Activism: New York and Boston (University of North Carolina Press, 2002). 2.
She really emphasizes how tough times were for Celie through living in the racist south, having men that beat her and abused her, and how the power of female relationships especially family saved her from the terrible life she lived. Works Cited Sova, Dawn B. "The Color Purple." Banned Books: Literature Suppressed on Social Grounds, Revised Edition. New York: Facts On File, Inc., 2006.