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The Color Purple
Transcript of The Color Purple
"Nobody ever love me, I say. She say, I love you, Miss Celie. And then she haul off and kiss me on the mouth"
page 113 Presented by:
Fredson, Shannon, Bailey, Sam, and Raven The Color Purple
By: Alice Walker Born in Georgia
Civil Rights activist
While pregnant she suffered from depression and aborted her baby
Used writing to escape ridicule as a child and as an outlet for her pain in adulthood Alice Walker Abused sexually and physically as a child and adult
Became pregnant twice
Had both children taken from her
Ridiculed for her appearance and intelligence
"You'd better not never tell nobody but God. It'd kill your Mammy"
page 1 Celie Power of Communication Celie writes her letters to God throughout her life
Keeps her invisible
Used as an outlet for her emotions
Letters from Nettie keeps Celie strong
"Dear God, I am fourteen years old. I am I have always been a good girl. Maybe you can give me a sign letting me know what is happening to me"
"Dear God, Now that I know Nettie alive I begin to strut a little bit"
page 148 Gaining of Independence
" But I don't know how to fight. All I know is how to stay alive"
"The jail you plan for me is the one in which you will rot"
" I change the cloth, I change the print, I change the waist, I change the pocket. I change the hem, I change the fullness of the leg"
"You making your living, Celie, she say. Girl, you on your way"
page 214 Celie develops from a controlled girl and housewife to an independent businesswoman
Makes pants indicating her new found
power despite what men
think she should be Power of Female Relationships Shug provides a person in whom Celie can confide
For the first time, Celie feels truly loved Religion Celie questions her reliance on God
Her perception of God changes from what
church has told her to believe to
what Shug envisions God to be
"Dear Nettie, I don't write to God no more. I write to you"
"I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it"
page 196 "He beat me like he beat the children. Cept he don't hardly never beat them. He say, Celie, git the belt, The children be outside the room peeking through the cracks. It all I can do not to cry. I make myself wood. I say to myself, Celie you a tree. That's how I know trees fear man."
page 22 Violence Celie has been abused from childhood into her marriage
Sofia is beaten severely for expressing her views
Mistreatment of women and African Americans
Cruel ceremonies in Africa
"...You gonna do what your mammy wouldn't"
"He beat me today cause he say I winked at a boy in church"
"It all I can do not to cry. I make myself wood. I say to myself, Celie, you a tree"
page 22 "Matter of fact, I think this is the youngest us ever felt"
page 288 Versus "Look at you. You black, you pore, you ugly, you a woman."
page 206 "He big and old and tall and graybearded and white. He wear white robes and go barefooted
Blue eyes? she ast
Sort of bluish-gray. Cool. Big though. White lashes. I say" page 194 Dear God. Dear stars, Dear trees, Dear sky, Dear Peoples. Dear Everything. Dear God" page 285 "She says, my first step from the old white man was trees. Then air. Then birds. Then other people. But one day I was sitting quiet and feeling like a motherless child, which i was, it come to me: that feeling of being part of everything, not separate at all. I knew that if I cut a tree, my arm would bleeed. And I laughed and I cried and I run all round the house. I knew just what it was." page 195 "I'm pore, I'm black i may be ugly and can't cook, a voice say to everything listening. But I'm here."
page 207 "Every lick you hit me you will suffer twice, I say. Then I say, you better stop talking because all I'm telling you ain't coming just from me. Look like when I my mouth the air rushes in and shape words."
page 206 Sexism Women are seen as objects, both in Georgia and in Africa
"Harpo ast his daddy why he beat me. Mr____ say, Cause she my wife. Plus, she stubborn. All women good for-he don't finish"
"...you a woman. Goddamn, he say, you nothing at all"
The Olinka do not believe girls should be educated...A girl is nothing to herself; only to her husband can she become something"
"Tashi is very intelligent. She could be a teacher. A nurse. She could help the people in the village.
-There is no place here for a woman to do those things"
page 161 Walker emphasizes that the struggles that both women and black people face are universal She teaches us that discrimination and hate are demonstrated around the globe Her message is still prominent today "He pick up a rock and laid my head open. The blood run all down tween my breasts." page 12 Celie stands up to Mr.___ God loves admiration "He beat me today cause he say I winked at a boy in church. I may have got somethin in my eye but I didn’t wink. I don’t even look at mens."
"Harpo ast his daddy why he beat me. Mr._______ say, Cause she my wife. Plus, she stubborn. All women good for—he don’t finish. He just tuck his chin over the paper like he do. Remind me of Pa"
page 23 Celie was abused both physically and mentally as a child by her stepfather. This abuse by men set the stage for Celie's adult life, foreshadowing the abuse she would later face and tolerate from her husband Mr.___. Racism The discrimination against black people is demonstrated in both Georgia and Africa "They crack her skull, they crack her ribs. They tear her nose loose on one side. They blind her in one eye. She swole from head to foot. Her tongue the size of my arm, it stick out tween her teef like a piece of rubber. She can't talk. And she just about the color of an eggplant."
pages 86-87 "They call me yellow
Like yellow be my name
They call me yellow
Like yellow be my name
But if yellow is a name
Why ain't black the same
Well, if I say Hey black girl
Lord, she try to ruin my game"
page 99 "Miss Millie: Would you like to work for me, be my maid?
Sofia: Hell no.
Mayor: Girl, what you say to Miss Millie?"
page 86 Mr.____ Although Mr. ____ isn't expressed as a main character he is essential to Celie's development as a person
After discovering that Mr.____ has been hiding numerous letters from Nettie , Celie publicly expresses anger towards Mr.____ at the dinner table and decides to move to Memphis with Shug . The letters that Celie and Nettie write represent their innermost thoughts within themselves as well as those they wish to share with others.
*Even though Celie is told that she should only speak to God, her writing allows the reader to visualize her experiences through her eyes. Symbolism:
Letters “I say write. She say, What? I say, write. She say, Nothing but death keep me from it. She never write.” (page 18)
Here, Celie is showing the importance that the letters served as a connection between her and Nettie. She realized that if she didn't write they would lose touch.
The fact that the entire novel is a series of consecutive letters further demonstrates that these characters want to feel connected to their family and are in search for their own identity.
**Celie is struggling with this throughout the novel. Symbolism: Pants Independence, liberation from men and dresses
~Celie starts her own clothing business
Pants represent being an individual and taking initiative for one's own action such as Celie becoming independent from Mr. ___ . When she decides to start her own sewing business, she makes pants, showing that she is not only self-reliant but is free from any gender stereotype and masculine oppression. Symbol: Roundness Having a full body and being round is associated with the concept of womanhood
Roundness is referred to when talking about the home. Nettie and Shug both discuss the desire for window which would be a way for them to be seen as who they really are. Symbolism: God God is viewed as Celie's listener and guide but he doesn’t always understand or answer Celie
*Celie stops thinking of god when she stops listening to other men
Shug teaches her to develop a new image of God Celie directs her anger about her life at God rather than the individuals really responsible and in turn chooses to ignore God. "Dear Nettie,
I don’t write to God no more. I write to you.What happen to God? ast Shug.Who that? I say.She look at me serious.Big a devil as you is, I say, you not worried bout no God, surely.She say, Wait a minute. Hold on just a minute here. Just because I don’t harass it like some peoples us know don’t mean I ain’t got religion.What God do for me? I ast.She say, Celie! Like she shock. He gave you life, good health, and a good woman that love you to death.Yeah, I say, and he give me a lunched daddy, a crazy mama, a lowdown dog of a step pa and a sister I probably won’t ever see again. Anyhow, I ay, the God I been praying and writing to is a man. And act just like all the other mens I know. Trifling, forgetful and lowdown.She say, Miss Celie, You better hush. God might hear you. Let ‘im hear me, I say. If he ever listened to poor colored women the world would be a different place, I can tell you, "
(page 192) Symbolism: Purple The color itself can serve as a double meaning. On one hand, the color purple represents violence and bruises but it can also symbolize royalty and beauty. Due to racist remarks, Sofia stands up for herself Imagery Shug Avery Shug is described as being a very promiscuous, self-oriented, blues singer who lives off of her good looks and music. She comes across very rude when first introduced to Celie, but as the novel progresses, Shug is portrayed as an icon of the self-empowerment of women.
Through the bonding of Shug and Celie, one is exposed to a rather compassionate and softer side of Shug as she begins to accept Celie as a lover as well as a friend. Originally, she is viewed as self-oriented which is a key example of the potential of growth embedded in all people through experience. Imagery Imagery Imagery To Nettie's disappointment, Africans view African Americans as inferior to them despite their same race. “I feel a little peculiar around the children. For one thing, they grown. And I see they think me and Nettie and Shug and Albert and Samuel and Harpo and Sofia and Jack and Odessa real old and don't know much what going on. But I don't think us feel old at all. And us so happy. Matter of fact, I think this the youngest us ever felt.” Celie sees her baby while out. She notices the baby's diaper has the same embroidery that her daughters diapers had and is left believing that the child is hers. This event foreshadows Celie's reunion with her children. Later on in the novel, the women seen with the child years ago, has Celie's children that she had believed were dead. After meeting two black activists (Corrine and Samuel), Nettie agrees to go with them to work in Africa. During her stay Nettie is forced to wear Corrine's clothes. Corrine is Samuel's wife who falls sick and dies. Nettie becomes Samuel's new wife. Nettie wearing Corrine's clothes can be seen as foreshadowing of Nettie taking over Corrine's role as a wife and mother. Symbolism:
Needles vs. Razors * nonviolent protest *more violent protest
*Shug smiles "like a razor opening" (53) but then settles down to sew with Celie.
*Celie looks about ready to cut Mr. _______’s throat after she discovers that he hid Nettie's letters. "I seen my baby girl. I knowed it was her." Foreshadowing:Violence Foreshadowing: Power of Communication Nettie is Celie's younger sister. At the beginning of the novel it is clear that Alphonso values Nettie over Celie. Nettie is stronger than Celie and leaves to start her own life leaving Celie to marry Mr.____. Celie and Nettie lose their relationship after Nettie moves away. Although Nettie writes to Celie, Mr.___ takes and hides the letters leaving Celie to believe that Nettie is dead. Nettie Foreshadowing: Nettie Published The Color Purple in 1982