The Color Purple

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Alice Walker has written of injustice in many fashions; Celia's struggles with her husband in The Color Purple; Olivia's injustice of female circumcision in Olivia; and the Old Woman in The Welcome Table. Her injustice was not merely racial but also classist. The Old Woman is a reminder to the congregation of the "Big White Church" that society is not as divided as they wish it to be; that no matter the attempts made to segregate people of different class or color, those considered beneath them will come across their path when and where they least wish or expect it to. Walker describes the Old Woman's imperfect attire and the white women wearing leathered bags and shoes, and calfskin gloves to show the differing class and how that alone is an obstacle. This was so not only for the Old Woman but for those not deemed a "decent" Black, as a term used back in segregated America. The church members are reminded of their cooks, chauffeurs and the like, not kind to mixing their religious practices with those they believe to be inferior. Walker also mentions the offense felt by some members of the Old Woman's age; pity that was felt for her; awakening a fear of aging.She was a reminder of delinquents and of the unknown culture of Black America.

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Racism, above all, played a part in the exit from the church. If the Old Woman were of a lighter shade more pity than disgust would have been felt, yet then her social status would have been the greater problem. The congregation, after the parting of the Old Woman, proceeds with their practice to "God's impartial love…" This love is most certainly not in their hearts and they lack complete compassion. The Old Woman holds greater love for God because she was open to love a God that is white in the image she worships. Jesus was clear in his teachings that one must love his neighbor and his enemy. The congregation's love for God is separable, taking no heart towards an old woman on a very frigid day, instead kicking her out of the Church showing no welcome at all.

My Response

The writings of Alice Walker have definitely taken more complex writings than any other African American writer. And this volume adds some utilized essays to extant comments. Harold Bloom (1989), not so well known incomplete as compared to other Chelsea House collections on African American authors, following Henry Louis Gates, Jr.(1993), which gives a better sense of the historical content outline Walker's critical understanding. Both prior collections take views by already well-known critics and gives foundational essays, even if variety that more often than not have the feel of a closed writing shop. The last part volume's chooses representation the editorial options of Gates's 1990 anthology Reading Feminist which does not have some of the works that fronts either significant theoretical backdrop to assessment of Walker or strong literary of particular texts. Work by Sandra Adell, Jacqueline Bobo, Carole Boyce Davies, Ann duCille, Karla Holloway, Wahneema Lubiano, and Susan Willis, for instance, assisted in providing contents for the work of a writer created as controversial. (Jacqueline Bobo's "Sifting through the Controversy: Reading The Color Purple" might well have showed any list because it so well expounded why it matters that "controversial" visualizes the contexts of a work's ides rather than reason that inhere somehow in a text.) Unlike the earlier volumes on Walker, Dieke's variety results from a call for essays, one that by ideal has no theoretically informed purspose of including despite a felt positive of Walker's value and the editor's own focus on intensity, myth, and archetype (adequate to the "monistic idealism" he front). Other than for Dieke and David Cowart (not primarily an African Americanism), the choices here come from relation new or less-known critics, yet always they move within the groove of earlier debates and ideas of definition. Dieke's introductory list of "six thematic motifs" relaxed groups separate essays, but doesn't help much--or aim to help--in identifying out the theoretical quagmires at stake in works of Walker since 1993. In appreciating of this collection's seriousness of reason, let me outline my sense of other tensions that to let know its sleeves.

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Alice walker described her strugles as black woman and tells the storie of Celie a black woman living in the south. She wrote letters to God and tell about her life struggles and her role as daughter and mother. During that time she met other black woman who helped and shape her life. In the south back then racism was the law, blacks and whites were completed segragated from each other. As she enters the church by mistake, instantly she became a threat to the whites as if this church is only there for one race. As she took her seat in a bench in the front of the church. Even the reverend stop her pleasantry and ask her to leave the church. As once can see in this essay, racism is blind all they can see is the color of her skin, but not that she can come to church and pray just like everyone else could. A church should be a place where everyone is welcome to worship. but if you are black that is unacceptable. The young usher, having never turned anyone away from his church before, went up to her and ask her that she should leave. All the fears is because she was of a different color and gender and they felt threaten by that. For Alice Walker the power of the black spiritual, its determination to overcome any struggles no matter how difficult it may be. The threat she pauses is the fact that she is old, black and different. she represent the "possibility of a servant class stepping out of line" She resisted to their ignorance and bigotry by still believing in God's power and her own inner strength to show an act of resistance to their taunting.

My Response

For me, the occasional realistic nature of some essays' general idea in relation to whatever limited critical and theoretical frames of source. That is, the elimination of plural and organized contexts creates some of these readings in between flat, as though thorough or localizing debates already well known from the time of Gates and Appiah's volume. One essay identifies The Color Purple as "an influential novel" and finds its "true purpose" in "a quest and a celebratin, a song of sorrow and of joy, of birth and the changing power of love." definitely, few would discuss with some general sense that The Color Purple following to presence by de Beauvoir and Sartre, but is no longer present renders it primacy as "an existential novel," a identifying sense of style, than does the in relation to Walt Whitman's sense of the "universal" make the poetry important more joined to women and men as readers. (One aspires for at least some different-reference to James Snead's wonderful essay on between African and European emotions of "universality.") Another reflection talking about Walker's quilting metaphor uses referencing from Alice Ostriker, Elaine Showalter and the rest in order to visualize sawing as femmage and ends without a conundrum "Cecli and I are the same" (my emphasis). Clearly, its proceedure of creating personal relationships makes sawing one of Walker's many cross-reference art forms, yet plural and always a critical relation to diverse norms and audiences shows thornier response problems than a feminized bricolage suggestion.