Alice Walker has been one of the most popular and outstanding figures in modern-day literature since 1970s. In her early literary calling, her focal point was on the religious endurance of the black people particularly the black adult females. In her plants, though she explores the jobs faced by a land and its people, she besides keeps her accent strong on the mending power of love and the possibility of a alteration. She besides used the term “ Womanism ” in her celebrated volume of essays “ In Search of Our Mother ‘s Gardens: Womanist Prose ” derived from the word “ Womanish ” used for a miss inquiring excessively many inquiries and speech production in her ain voice. In her plants, Walker has ever valued the bonds between adult females, their civilization, their emotional flexibleness and their strength.
The Color Purple is considered a authoritative womanist text. It is about being a adult female and a black, populating in the frame of male civilisation, racialist and male chauvinist, being capable to all possible signifiers of subjugation. It explores the modern hunt for integrity, connexion of people in an age of atomization and development. Trudier Harris in Black American Literature Forum states that The Color Purple has “ go the authoritative novel by a black adult female ” because “ the pendulum finding focal point on black authors had swung in their favor… and Alice Walker had been waiting in the wings of the feminist motion… ”
The Color Purple is an epistolatory novel i.e. it is written as a series of paperss, the usual signifier is letters. This technique allows Celie to talk for herself ; she besides gets to construction her individuality and her sense of ego by composing her letters. Celie ‘s letters, her turning ability to show her ideas point out to her religious development and besides pave the manner for her independency. The novel ‘s narrative technique is linked with the novel ‘s chief thematic image of deriving an individuality, of metempsychosis and of endurance. Through the signifier, Walker besides links a formal and western tradition to an unwritten and clearly African American common people look. The usage of the common infuses an old signifier with new life. Alice Walker uses the colour purple which is a colour of victory, imperial power. By utilizing this colour, Walker has rendered gallantry to their lives and to their ability to last and prevail over subjugations and adversities.
The novel faced unfavorable judgment by the Afro Americans because of the unfavorable portraiture of work forces as being capable of suppressing other members of the community particularly adult females. Young adult females are treated like sexual objects ; Celie is raped by her ‘Pa ‘ . Her instruction is discontinued forcibly against her want ; she is married off to a individual because she has become a “ load ” . At the start of the novel, her lone voice is her letters to God. In ‘The Bluest Eye ‘ Pecola is wholly silenced as a consequence of paternal force, Celie does non vacate her beauty to a universe where bluish eyes seem to be the white criterion of beauty. Celie confides in to God about her agonies and non to any fanciful friend, she refuses to be a unvoiced victim.
The novel makes usage of the Socialist and the Radical theory of Feminism. Harmonizing to the Socialist theory, the lower position of adult females is due to the fact that the adult females are economically dependent on the male spouse and the ideological myths about adult females have strengthened the male power over them. These myths have played a powerful function in specifying their major functions as that of a female parent, housekeeper and a child rearer. Harmonizing to the Radical Theory, patriarchate is a consequence of the development of female biological science by work forces ; matrimony based household relationships in which work forces control adult females ‘s behavior.
At the beginning of the fresh one can detect that Celie is wholly barren of individuality. Her hubby Mr ___ calls Celie a ‘nobody ‘ . Celie is unable to specify herself. Her life has been fragmented into pieces, given off to others. In the ulterior phases of the novel, through the narrative, one realizes Celie takes a measure frontward towards her ain self-acceptance when she announces her determination to go forth Mr ___ and unrecorded with Shug in Memphis. Celie declares, “ I ‘m pore, I ‘m black, I may be ugly and ca n’t cook… But I ‘m here ” . Initially in the fresh Celie does non subscribe her letters but after a certain point she does so underscoring on her individuality through her household relationships, her concern, her love, her new topographic point in the universe.
The Womanism in The Color Purple brings out the word picture of assorted adult females characters which are Celie, Nettie, Shug, Sofia, and Mary Agnes. The bonding between them is besides a ground responsible for Celie ‘s metabolism into a strong and an independent individual. In the novel the narrative of Sofia ‘s sisters brings to illume the importance of female bonding and the possible power of adult females. Quilts and quilting play an of import function in The Color Purple. They embody the ideal of integrity in diverseness which is really outstanding in Walker ‘s novels. As a armistice Sofia and Celie make a comforter of diverse forms proposing the above stated thought of integrity in diverseness. Women ‘s quilting plays the function of making a female community in a universe that represses any signifier of female look. Quilting in The Color Purple is a symbol of female bonding, creativeness and a manifestation of African American common people civilization.
Letterss written by Nettie depict the widespread racism of Whites and it is besides a contrast between the life of inkinesss in New York and the 1s in South. The Whites consider the missional work in Africa merely a ‘duty ‘ whereas the Africans and American Blacks work for the upliftment of the black people everyday.
In the novel, Nettie, Sofia and Shug go beyond the conventions of being a black adult female ; Nettie ‘s instruction allows her to research the larger universe and to go a missional. Sofia refuses to be controlled by anyone. In her relationship with her hubby, Harpo, she goes beyond the gender conventions: she works in the Fieldss while Harpo takes attention of the domestic responsibilities. Harmonizing to the radical-libertarian women’s rightists, work forces should be permitted to research their feminine dimensions and adult females their masculine 1s. No human being should be forbidden the sense of integrity that comes from uniting his or her masculine and feminine dimensions.
The character of Shug Avery represents a entire flaunting of the society ‘s prescribed functions for adult females. Her calling as a blues vocalist enables her to see much more freedom than the other adult females bound by their responsibilities. Celie finds Shug to be the most beautiful adult female in the universe. Celie becomes cognizant of her ain beauty through her relationship with Shug. Celie ‘s acknowledgment of her ain beauty is a really of import measure towards her ego independency and self credence. The physical love between Shug and Avery is symbolic of the entire release of adult females. Shug teaches Celie to love her ain organic structure and to follow the intuition of her head.
Shug wholly changes Celie thoughts about God. Celie distrust a white, male God because he does non listen to ‘poor coloured adult females ‘ . He is neither male nor female, black or white. For her God is present in all creative activity. In this perceptual experience of God, Walker reflects her ain apprehension. Through the voice of Shug, Walker emphasises the integrity of all life. At the terminal of the novel, Celie is able to turn to a missive to this new God which completes her journey of seeking her individuality: “ Dear God. Dear stars, beloved trees, beloved sky, beloved peoples. Dear everything. Dear God ” .
In the novel, the complete redefining of gender functions besides leads to important alterations in the character of Mr ___ . His love for Shug indicates that even he can love and care for person. In the terminal, his attitude sing adult females, gender functions is wholly changed. He is transformed from anon. Mr ___ to ‘Albert ‘ .
Towards the terminal of the novel, the female characters of the fresh find their terms. Through their comforters, vocals they realize their individualities and individualism. Shug and Mary Agnes find themselves in music ; Sofia and Celie in their Quilts ; Nettie in her instruction ; Celie besides creates her folkpants which is besides a apogee of art and free spirit. Walker in a really cagey turn uses a traditional white vacation to tag the religious, economic, emotional and societal independency of Celie.