Philomela Speaks: Alice Walker's Revisioning of Rape Archetypes in The Color Purple - Critical Essay. MELUS, Fall – Winter, 2000. Davis, Thadious M. Walker’s Celebration of Self in Southern Generations. Hooks, Bell, ‘Writing the Subject: Reading The Color Purple’, in Bloom, H., ed. Modern Critical Views: Alice Walker, New York, 1989.
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. For a considerable amount of time Celie blindly accepted the fact that she would be treated like a slave in her own home. As a result, Celie demonstrated intense fear and a complete lack of love toward her husband. Because Mr. _____ had originally wanted to marry Celie’s older sister Nettie he felt that in settling for Celie he had the right to treat her as his property. Celie was completely aware of these arrangements “Mr.
New York: Oxford UP, 1985. Walker, Alice. The Color Purple. New York: Harcourt, 1982.
(1989) ‘Speaking in Tongues: Dialogics, Dialectics, and the Black Woman Writer's Literary Tradition.’ in Napier, W. (2000) African American Literary Theory: A Reader. New York: New York UP, 2000. 257-267 Millet, K. (1971) Sexual Politics. London: Rupert Hart-Davis Spivak, G., (1985) ‘Three Women’s Texts and a Critique of Imperialism.’ in Ashcroft et al (Ed.) (1995) The Post-Colonial Studies Reader.
New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1997. Moi, Toril. Sexual/Textual Politics: Feminist Literary Theory. New York: Routledge, 1985. Walker, Nancy A. Feminist Alternatives: Irony and Fantasy in the Contemporary Novel by Women.
Forcefully silenced into submission and subject to continuous abuse by the man, she thought was her father, Celie adopts the private mode of letter writing to express her grievances. Growing up in a southern working class household, Celie is exposed to the full force of sexism in a primarily black society. Addressing her concerns to God, the first letter immediately brings to light the plight of the innocent girl child who is rudely forced to acknowledge her womanhood at the age of fourteen when she is constantly raped and impregnated by her step father. The letters are written in the first person but even though she assumes the “I”, she does not sign the letters as she is perhaps aware that her private life is still dictated by the patriarch of the household. This can also be read as conscious attempt on Walker’s part to suggest that the plight of Celie is the plight of most black women of her age, hence the deliberate omission.
New York: Norton, 1994, 159-73 Papke, Mary E. Verging On the Abyss: The Social Fiction of Kate Chopin and Edith Wharton. New York: Greenwood Press, 1990. Showwalter, Elaine. Tradition and the Female Talent: The Awakening as a Solitary Book. Feminist Criticism Essay.
Available: http://www.bcsd.org/BHS/english/mag97/papers/hurston.htm Washington, Mary Helen. ìThe Darkened Eye Restored: Notes Toward a Literary History of Black Women.î Reading Black, Reading Feminist: A Critical Anthology. Ed. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. New York: Meridian, 1990. 30-43.
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