Creativity in Alice Walker's Color Purple

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Expressing Creativity in The Color Purple In Alice Walker's The Color Purple, many characters at some point find a way of expressing their artistic creativity. For instance, Celie makes pants, and Shug Avery and Mary Agnes sing. But what is the significance of expressing creativity? If there is a relationship between artistic expression and one's personal development, what exactly is this relationship? I wish to answer these questions by examining Celie's case in particular. The key to the first question lies in the comment Albert makes on life while sewing with Celie on the porch, "If you ast yourself why you black or a man or a woman or a bush it don't mean nothing if you don't ast why you here, period" (289-290). It is about existence, about why we are here. However, this existence is not confirmed by others' acknowledgement. Rather, it depends only on one's awareness of one's own existence. Coming to such recognition, however, is a gradual process divided into several different stages. It starts with a power of creativity within a character (in the context of this novel, primarily a female character) that is unnoticed but screams to be released. When the character, usually with the inspiration of a role model, finds a vent for her creativity, it gushes out like a fountain. The character is often surprised at the art she is capable of creating, and soon comes to admire her own creation and creativity. From here she gains confidence, and comes to realize that she is here for a divine purpose: to express a beauty that God has created. In Walker’s essay "In Search of Our mothers" Gardens, she talks about the black mothers or grandmothers who are torn by their own creativity: These grandmothers and mothe... ... middle of paper ... .... In making pants, she understands and affirms her own existence, and comes close to God. Walker, through the story of Celie, describes for us a process of development. It is a search into oneself for the purpose of one's existence. The answer is that we all possess a creative power that is divine, and when we find it, recognize it, and express it, we show that we are, each of us, God, who creates beauty and loves all. Works Cited Walker, Alice. In Search of Our Mothers Gardens. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1983. - - -. The Color Purple. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1982. Other Works Consulted Bloom, Harold ed. Alice Walker (Modern Critical Views). New York: Chelsea, 1989. Dixon, Melvin. Ride Out the Wilderness: Geography and Identity in Afro-American Literature. Chicago: Univ. of Illinois Press, 1987.
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