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

How has Alice Walker explored the themes of love and friendship in "The Color Purple", and with what effect?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

IB English The Color Purple Victoria Ulett Essay How has Alice Walker explored the themes of love and friendship in "The Color Purple", and with what effect? Love and friendship are a necessity in life and in growing as a person. Love gives people the ability to connect with and feel for another person on all levels, it also gives us the ability to have and maintain friendships allowing us to be a part of another person's life. A person without love and friendship has no form of emotion or feeling causing them to question their sense of self, and their ability to form personal relationships. In the novel The Color Purple, the main theme is that man we as humans often defeat our problems through the nurturing and growth of close relationships. From this, Alice Walker explores numerous themes of love and friendship between vast arrays of characters. One of the main forms that she addresses is the power of strong female friendships. Throughout the novel, Walker depicts this through the women's needs to tell their stories of hardship, therefore giving these women their chance to survive the constant oppression and dominance forced upon them by males. The friendships of these women are so strong that they can gain protection, giving them the chance to share love in a difficult world full of male violence and dominance. ...read more.

Middle

The two women eventually make love in which Celie says, "I cry and cry and cry", this intimacy and love for Shug allows Celie to be closer to and endure Mr. both emotionally and physically, therefore eventually leading to them having a friendship. The theme of love and friendship is further demonstrated in the relationship between Celie and Mr. It is portrayed as questionable to a modern society, because of the constant exploitation (both physical and emotional) Celie has endured from Mr. At the outset of their relationship there was no love or friendship, Mr simply married Celie because "She'd come with her own linen. And she [could] take that cow...". It is evident when reading the novel at the beginning that Mr treats her like slave as a white man would to a black man, he also makes her do all of the housework and raise his abusive children and forces her to have sex with him. If Celie does not conform to any of his demands, he beats her, and Celie obeys this and thinks it is her place when "Sometimes he beat me anyhow...whether I do what he say or not." Nonetheless, as Celie grows closer to standing up for herself, and with the help of Shug, she finds years of letters from her sister Nettie, which Mr has been hiding away. ...read more.

Conclusion

The fact that Harpo is feminine, Sofia masculine, and that one feels the need to commit to a role that the other does not, proves the balance between the two, and love they have for each other. This is further proved after Sofia leaving Harpo when "Harpo sit on the steps acting like he don't care". All of the words in this sentence are sharp and monosyllabic, showing that he is cut up and suppressing his true feelings. Later in the novel, as Harpo is making a net, we see a comparison to the previous sewing of the quilt between Celie and Sofia in which they were symbolically making a friendship, he is doing it because he wants to mend his errors and embrace the love again. It is also evident that Sofia still loves Harpo because of the difficulty she had when leaving, and the few significant items she took which I believe contained loving memories. The effect that Alice Walker gave to the reader when exploring the themes of love and friendship was one of deeper knowledge. As the reader learnt about and began to understand these themes, they could empathise with them because love and friendship are fundamental to survival. Without love and friends we are nothing, and as all of these characters that experienced these themes grew, so did we as readers because we could relate. Word count: 1,279 ...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. Ideas and themes in 'The Flowers' By Alice Walker

    "The air was damp, the silence close and deep. This creates a claustrophobic sense to the end of the paragraph and makes the reader feel enclosed within the text. It also intensifies Myop's lack of safety. The strangeness indicates how alien her surroundings are to her. Walker carries on introducing dark images, Myop "circles back to the house", the

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

    After focusing on the public Alice Walker�s opinion is expressed in detail. The conclusion sums up the results and points out the disadvantages and the achievements of the movie. 2. A Hollywood production? In 1982 Alice Walker wrote a highly acclaimed novel which won her the American Book Award and a Pulitzer Price for fiction: The Color Purple.

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

    This shows that even men who are expected to take care of their family are taking advantage of their own daughters. Celie is also hit on her wedding day by one of Mr___ son's. As she is a woman she is no position to say anything about it.

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

    "I think it pisses God off if you walk by the colour purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it." Shug says in letter 75. Walker seems to have named her book "The Color Purple" to give a collective name for the main contrasting themes of oppression and complete independence.

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

    It also has the effect of making white western viewers understand how privileged they are in normally being able to understand and identify with their representations. The uncomfortableness of this film may put people in touch with how difficult it is for black peoples to watch films that they do not identify with and thus fully comprehend.

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

    From the very beginning of the novel, we are hurled into Celie's world where she shares with us her most intimate thoughts and beliefs. As we progress through the text, it is clear that she grows as a writer and an intellectual.

  2. The Life Lesson of "Everyday Use" by Alice Walker.

    Walker later becomes an attorney who prosecutes civil rights cases. Their marriage to one another didn't last long but only till 1976. But in 1969, before they ended it, they gave birth to their daughter who they named Rebecca Grant.

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