The Color Purple: Consolation in Female Bonding

2118 words 9 pages
Copyright: Martina Diehl June 2012

The Color Purple: Consolation in Female Bonding
Celie’s road to trusting and loving herself

This essay is about the love affair in The Color Purple, a novel by Alice Walker in which, thoughts on racism, incest, rape, love and family affairs are provoked. The reader learns about these subjects through the letters that Celie, an uneducated black woman, writes to God and through the letters that her sister Nettie and Celie write to each other. I would like to discuss how Walker raises the issue of love between females, which involves trust and understanding, two aspects that the men in the novel don’t possess. The reader witnesses how the women are being oppressed and abused in this men’s world,
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Comparing Walker to Morrison
Walker addresses the intersectionality of black women in a white society. As she guides the reader through the novel, the reader discovers the class differences in South America. Not only are white women less powerful than white men, beneath that are the African Americans, in which the African American female seems to be the lowest class. Toni Morrison presents the reader with a similar view where the ‘coloured’ people are in search of the self, trying to fight for a better future. Both novels show the oppression within society that bellows for the African Americans.
Walker seems to concentrate on showing the reader all aspects of oppression by highlighting Celie’s sexual preference, and the sexism and racism which is present not only between a white and black society but also within the African American society. Walker lets the reader find the different levels of discrimination within classes of society. In The Color Purple as well as in Song of Solomon, these different levels of discrimination arise. Macon Dead and the narrator in Song of Solomon show the reader these different levels of discrimination in the following excerpt:

““Why can’t you dress like a woman?” He was standing by the stove. What’s that sailor’s cap doing on your head? Don’t you have stockings? What are you trying to make me look like in this town?” He trembled with the thought of