Alice Walker is an American author who wrote a controversial novel during the civil rights movement. This novel, ‘The Color Purple’, is based on the ideas of racism, sexism, and freedom. As an author, Alice Walker was very active in the civil rights movement and her childhood greatly influenced her writing. In her novel, Walker uses diary entries to create a musical sense which makes her novel connected and rhythmic. Also, Walker’s work embraces black culture and how people had to live during times of racial segregation. Alice Walker bases her characters on her own life struggles to convey a message to the readers of staying strong and having perseverance through challenges in life.
Alice Walker was born into a poor family …show more content…
“In Walker's writing, redemption will take one away and bring one back, in a perhaps humbling but empowering way, to something close to home.” (Whitsitt 15) Her writing has a inspirational meaning which impacted readers everyday life. Also, many of Walker’s writing is based on music or has some sort of musical reference. “The fiction of "Everyday Use," in which Mama comes to have a voice, is an art which would on the one hand deny the role of the artist, but only insofar as the one who comes to have a voice becomes an artist” (Whitsitt 24). Walker’s writing is sometimes based on specific real-life people like the story ‘Nineteen Fifty-five’, which is based on Elvis Presley. “Walker both encapsulates the essence of the theme which unites the stories in the volume and alludes to the signifying relationship of her work, particularly the story ‘Nineteen Fifty-five,’ to the lives and work of several others from the past” (Johnson 8). By using real-life artists, Walker creates a real and relatable character who can be connected to Elvis. Accordingly, most of Walker’s novels have a musical theme and specifically ‘Nineteen Fifty-five’ describes a young black women’s journey to exploring the art of music (Johnson
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Realism is often portrayed by writers such as Alice Walker. Her poems, essays, short stories, and novels portray her views on feminism and civil rights while giving a realist approach that has provoked readers for many years. Her horrific and brutally honest writing style made the world see a different view of minority women and allowed her to receive the Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Color Purple (“Alice Walker”). She lived a life of poverty and racial discrimination, which led her to become an opinionated feminist. Walker’s realistic writing style portrays her obscure upbringing and her feminist opinions; in her work The Color Purple, she shows the aspects of growing up as a minority woman and the frequency of racial discrimination.
The Color Purple by Alice Walker is a story written in 1982 that is about the life struggles of a young African American woman named Celie. The novel takes the reader through several main topics including the poor treatment of African American women, domestic abuse, family relationships, and also religion. The story takes place mostly in rural Georgia in the early 1900’s and demonstrates the difficult life of sharecropper families. Specifically how life was endured from the perspective of an African American woman. The Color Purple is written in the form of letters that Celie narrates explaining the events that took place at certain points in her life. Celie endures physical and emotional abuse by some of the people around her including her own family. But in the end Celie finds a new and fulfilling life through relationships with her sister and good friends.
Women have battled for centuries to be equivalent to men. In “The Color Purple," Alice Walker illustrates the theme of women’s heartache, racist acts, and complications of a day to day woman. The Color Purple took place during a demeaning era to not only African American women but African Americans in general were treated inhumane. African American women submitted themselves to controlling men due to the belief of that’s how it should be. During this time, women were used for manual and sexual labor. They were referred as one’s property, hardly spoken of or treated like human-beings. Women faced lack of self-love and identity therefore the definition of love was clouded.
Novelist Alice Walker the youngest of eight children; was born in an unprivileged family. At a young age, she was blinded in one eye by a BB gun misfortune; which caused her to be shy during her infantile years. A known bisexual feminist Walker has advocated rights for women since a young adult. Walker is known for her soul filled books, essays, and poems. Her past has a lot to do with the literature she writes as it is base of her life experiences and African American heritage. Some her famous writings are Prize-winning novel, “The Color Purple” which illustrates the bigotry African America women underwent, this book later became a movie that won film awards. Also in her assortments of writings is” In Love and Trouble”: Stories of Black Women
In 1982, Walker published her most controversial and famous book, ‘The Color Purple’. It is written in the form of epistolary (letter), the novel included vivid descriptions of rape, incest, bisexuality, lesbianism, and “black- on – black” violence and abuse. It recounted the tragic but ultimately triumphant life story of Celie, a young victimized black woman. A year later it appeared it got Pulitzer Prize in fiction and National Book Award, and in 1985 it was adapted as motion picture. Walker’s longtime best- seller transcended black and gender
The Black woman struggles against oppression not only as a result of her race, but also because of her gender. Slavery created the perception of Black inferiority; sexism traces back to the beginning of Western tradition. White men have shaped nearly every aspect of culture, especially literature. Alice Walker infuses her experiences as a Black woman who grew up in Georgia during the Civil Rights era into the themes and characters of her contemporary novels. 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.
A common human behavior due to illusory superiority is to overestimate skill, capability or perception of oneself in comparison to others or underestimate it. Alice Walker, a black woman herself, a partaker of feminist and anti-racist activism has created a scenario that nearly every person from any cultural background can identify with. Miss Millie in the Color Purple has, in fact, internalized racism and refuses to acknowledge it, maintaining that she is “less racist” than the “other white people”. While viewing herself as superior among blacks and whites, Miss Millie remains in denial about her subtle racism and is unaware of the fact that her comments are insults rather than the compliments she assumes them to be. This disconnect fuels Sofia’s response, “Hell no”, as an offended person of color. With the use of imagery, language, and the character’s unconscious and conscious motives, Walker accurately depicts a scene bursting with themes of racism, sexism, and cultural stereotypes.
Charles Whitaker questions the fact, “Is this the Alice Walker, the alleged fire-breathing feminist, or "womanist" (to use her term) whose Pulitzer Prize Winning novel, The Color Purple, has, for many, come to symbolize Black male bashing at its worst? This novel that Walker has created is certainly a masterpiece, but as Whitaker shows with his questioning, this novel strikes immense amounts controversy among it’s readers and leaves most confused and concerned about Walker's intentions. On a more important note, it is important to consider the fact that this book has been banned all over the country by various schools and libraries due to its controversy. See, the problems with humans is that when they confront something they don’t understand or don’t agree with, the first thing they do is simply remove it. Very often does humanity take the effort to understand the things they don’t agree with, but quite often those ideas are crucial in our race's
The Color Purple, written by Alice Walker, is a very heavy book to read. The author focuses on very difficult and hard aspects of the life of a poor, African American women, in the early twentieth century. Alice Walker truly shows that no one is exempt from the possibility of a happy life and a conscious connection to oneself and all that is around her in nature, regardless of the trials and tribulations of their past.
Alice Walker grew up in rural Georgia in the mid 1900s as the daughter of two poor sharecroppers. Throughout her life, she has been forced to face and overcome arduous lessons of life. Once she managed to transfer the struggles of her life into a book, she instantaneously became a world-renowned author and Pulitzer Prize winner. The Color Purple is a riveting novel about the struggle between redemption and revenge according to Dinitia Smith. The novel takes place rural Georgia, starting in the early 1900s over a period of 30 years. Albert, also known as Mr._____, and his son Harpo must prevail over their evil acts towards other people, especially women. Albert and Harpo wrong many people throughout their lives. To be redeemed, they must first learn to love others, then reflect upon their mistakes, and finally become courageous enough to take responsibility for their actions. In The Color Purple, Alice Walker effectively develops Albert and Harpo through redemption using love, reflection, and responsibility.
In southern place of Rural Georgia there were racial issues. Walker discuss stereotypes that Celie went through as the daughter of a successful store owner, which ran by a white man Celie did not have no right to. The black characters and community were stereotyped through their lives to have human rights (Walker 88-89). Walker engages the struggle between blacks and whites social class, blacks were poor and the whites were rich. This captures the deep roots of the south discrimination against blacks. African-American women went through misery, and pain of racism to be discriminated by the color of their skin. Another major racist issue Hurston represent in “The Color Purple” is when Sofia tells the mayors wife saying “hell no” about her children working for her, Sofia was beaten for striking back to a white man (Walker 87). Racism and discrimination in the black culture did not have basic rights as the whites instead they suffered from being mistreated to losing moral
Alice Walker's Literature “Writing saved me from the sin and inconvenience of violence” -Alice Walker (Lewis n.pag) Walker is considered to be an African American novelist, short story writer, poet, essayist, and activist. Most of her literature is mostly from her personal experiences and is moral to a number of African Americans all over the world. Walker defines herself as a “womanist” which means “the prophetic voice concerned about the well-being of the entire African American community, male and female, adults and children.
There are numerous works of literature that recount a story- a story from which inspiration flourishes, providing a source of liberating motivation to its audience, or a story that simply aspires to touch the hearts and souls of all of those who read it. One of the most prevalent themes in historical types of these kinds of literature is racism. In America specifically, African Americans endured racism heavily, especially in the South, and did not gain equal rights until the 1960s. In her renowned book The Color Purple, Alice Walker narrates the journey of an African American woman, Celie Johnson (Harris), who experiences racism, sexism, and enduring hardships throughout the course of her life; nonetheless, through the help of friends and family, she is able to overcome her obstacles and grow into a stronger, more self-assured individual. While there are numerous themes transpiring throughout the course of the novel, the symbolism is one of the strongest prospects for instigating the plot. In The Color Purple by Alice Walker, numerous symbols influence and drive the plot of the novel.
Alice Walker grew up the youngest of eight children. She was in an accident as a child that left her blind in one eye. She is best known for her work The Color Purple. Much of her work is focused on Civil Rights for African Americans. In Alice Walker’s poem Remember? she begins by posing a question. Just by the title, the reader begins to believe that this poem is taking place in the past, it may cause the reader to think of another time where they have been asked the question, remember? To paraphrase, the poem begins rather dark, a hate for Walker’s physical appearance, which makes reference to her past time when her eye had been shot by a BB gun. She continues with detest towards her life and the way that she is living her life, "holding their babies / cooking their meals / sweeping their yards / washing their clothes." After these first two stanzas, the poem shifts into a powerful and defiant outlook. She no longer lets this hate for herself, or the hate that comes from the oppression against her skin color to affect her. She turns from looking at the bad times that have struck her life, as moments for possibility for the future.