• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss the presentation of Albert in ‘The Color Purple’

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Discuss the presentation of Albert in 'The Color Purple' In these letters, Mr._ is a harsh, cruel man. He is presented as being bitter and chauvinistic and like many of the men in this society, has no respect for women. Mr._ changes with the arrival of Shug, we see his redeeming features and the reminder of his former, more likeable character. Towards Celie, Mr._ is contemptuous, he marries her because he needs a replacement slave and he would get Celie's cow in dowry. Mr._ takes "whole spring from March to June, to make up his mind" about marrying Celie, this seems like an insult to Celie. There is a lack of dignity for her, as Celie's own marriage is out of her control. Celie found "it hard to think with gitting married to Mr._ hanging over my head". "Mr._ come finally one day looking all drug out" showing he is only marrying Celie as a last resort, all he wants is her cow "that cow still coming?" Celie has a dismal wedding day, Mr._ is detached and doesn't care when his children hurt her, he says "don't do that! -But that's all he say". Mr._ refuses to chat to his children "they try to get his tention, he hide hind a puff of smoke". Yet when Nettie comes he pays her compliments she does not want to hear "That's a real pretty dress you got on." ...read more.

Middle

At this point in the book, the reader's opinion of Mr._ could not be any worse. Mr._ is a coward, when the preacher "got his mouth on Shug Avery" and is criticizing her "Mr._ don't say nothing...he gaze out the window." Later, he rescues Shug, who brings out his emotional side; "Nobody fight for Shug he say. And a little water come to his eyes." We have empathy with Mr._ now; his love for Shug makes him slightly likeable as a character. We know there is no communication in Mr._ and Celie's marriage as, through lack of use, she doesn't even remember his first name; "who Albert, I wonder. Then I remember Albert Mr._ first name." This character's name change seems to make him more endearing, more human. Shug makes Albert bearable but Celie does not dare to call him 'Albert' yet. Albert loves Shug so much he stops smoking for her "Mr._ don't smoke. Don't drink. Don't even hardly eat." When Shug is ill Albert watches her "every breath" showing how adoring and worried he is. Shug exposes Albert quirks "they have made three babies together but he squeamish bout giving her a bath." Albert finally says something nice to Celie "Mr._ asks me how I git her to eat" "I bin scared, he say. Scared." We find Albert's weaknesses now "he cover up his eyes with his hands", and it seems as though he wants to hide his vulnerability from Celie. ...read more.

Conclusion

Albert in hiding the letters is acting solely out of malice; he still holds a grudge against Nettie because she wouldn't do what he wanted. Celie's disbelief, that Albert "been keeping your letters", is touching, after all Albert has done to her she says "Naw...Mr._ mean sometimes, but he not that mean." This is a massive betrayal of Celie and shows Albert's power over her, that he can stop her receiving her sister's letters. Nettie never doubts Celie's faithfulness, she knows Celie isn't writing back because of Albert "you probably won't get this letter...I'm sure Albert is still the only one to take mail out of the box". Shug has Albert under her control, she can get find out anything about him and knows he is spiteful enough to hide Nettie's letters "he that mean". Shug stops loving him the moment she finds out he beats Celie, we respect Shug more for this. We have no justification for Mr._'s behaviour towards Celie, except for his love of Shug and the society, which has indoctrinated him. Later when Mr._ becomes wiser he starts to see Celie as a human being, listens to her, and explains his reasons for treating her so badly. Until this happens, she does not forgive him and neither does the reader. All we see presented is a barbaric, angry man who has through his own fault lost the lady he loves. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Alice Walker section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Alice Walker essays

  1. The differences between the novel by Alice Walker, "The Color Purple" and the film ...

    these poor scraps of her life together CELIE is in fact praying - and telling her story to God." (Walker 1996, p. 63) By kneeling down in a position that is normally used for praying you can see that it is a purifying act of self-reflection.

  2. The impact of 'The Color Purple' is emotional rather than intellectual and this exemplifies ...

    The importance of sisterhood as a stepping stone to freedom is also emphasised. Another prominent issue from the 1980's is sexuality. All through Celie's life she has bad experiences with men, but she 'can look at women' because she's 'not scared of them' (page 7).

  1. An Analysis of Daughters of the Dust and The Color Purple using Black Feminist ...

    empowerment according to Maggie Humm's writings on Angela Davis "Often the strength a black woman gains from her family community and reproductive roles cushions her in her harsh public labour" (Humm, 1992, p. 128). Dash's intensive exposition of the everyday, without major emphasis on dramatic events, alludes to the Combahee

  2. Compare how each writer presents Black women's struggles in 'The Color Purple' and 'I ...

    Walker is able to show the inhuman act that is forced upon Sofia as she is not even allowed to see her children. Walker shows that even though strong women can rebel against sexism, they still have to suffer from the consequences of racism.

  1. 'The Color Purple' by Alice Walker shocks us with rape and violence.

    We only see that they are capable of loving after the women leave them. We see that the loving side of Harpo. Celie asks him if he minds Sofia working and Harpo replies 'what I'm gon mind for? He says.

  2. Examine Walker's narrative techniques in The Color Purple including consideration of the use of ...

    Another quote from "The Heroine's Story" further links Nettie's letters to Barbara Christian's comments on the post-modern form. "The novel moves freely in time and space, juxtaposing the African motifs with the African American, thus supplying a dialectical commentary on the two cultures."

  1. Compare and contrast the ways the authors use first person narrative to present the ...

    The majority of the letters including Netties tend to be more confessional as Celies letters to God are seen to be private and written much like journal entries, 'I don't even look at mens. That's the truth.' This is also the first set of information the reader receives of what

  2. 'The Color Purple' - How realistic is the presentation of the Olinka? What contribution ...

    You have to be a man to gain respect and women with respect are considered an 'honorary man' by Nettie. The Olinka tribe can be described as a microcosm of the bigger picture, making the sub-plot realistic and extremely important in enhancing the reader's knowledge of the wider picture.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work