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

The colour purple - Analysis of the 1st three letters.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Analysis of the 1st three letters The book begins with a threat: "You better not never tell nobody but God. It'd kill your mammy." The threat is not immediately explained. In Celie's first letter to God, the reader learns that the main character is a fourteen-year-old girl. She explains to God how she has always been good and, therefore, does not understand why she is being sexually abused. Her mother has refused to engage in sexual activity after having another baby; as a result, Celie's father has begun to rape her continuously. When she cries, he chokes her and tells her to get used to it. In addition to this cruel treatment she receives from her father, Celie is also expected to be the housekeeper, performing all the domestic chores. Celie relates that she feels sick when she does the cooking, which is also the place Alfonso, her father rapes her. This 1st letter shocks the reader with its graphic description of Celie being raped by her father. ...read more.

Middle

Her mother was demanding, yelling and cursing at Celie while the Pa sat beside her bed crying that he did not want to be left alone. The reader discovers that months have passed since the first letter. In the meantime, Celie has given birth to a baby. When her mother asked whose child it was, Celie responded that it was God's child, for she did not know any other man besides her father, who had raped and got her pregnant. One day the mother finally asked Celie what happened to the child; not fully knowing the answer herself, Celie tells her mother that God took the baby and killed it in the woods while she was sleeping. She then tells her mother that she is pregnant again and that God will probably take this second child and kill it as well. This second letter emphasizes the sense of Celie's own powerlessness, as well as her mother's powerlessness to help her. On her deathbed, Celie's mother makes a weak attempt to find out who is responsible for Celie's pregnancy. ...read more.

Conclusion

Celie has just delivered her second child, a boy. Pa immediately stole the baby and sold him. As the milk runs down Celie, Pa displays disgust towards her about the milk and tells her to dress more decently; unfortunately, the girl has nothing else to wear. She tells God that she hopes Pa will soon find a woman to marry him, for he is beginning to show interest in Nettie, her little sister. She has promised Nettie that she will protect her. It is obvious that Celie has no control over her life or her body. Raped repeatedly by her father, she feels helpless to break the cycle. Her lack of control over her fate is also intensely shown through her swollen breasts. The emotional pain of her child being stolen from her could symbolically be echoed in her painful breasts. She is made to feel even more miserable when Pa screams at her about her disgusting appearance. Celie's promise to protect Nettie from Pa's abuse is the first sign of her taking a stance to prevent the horrors, which are occurring in her patriarchal existence. Although she totally devalues herself, Celie cherishes her sister very much. Her selflessness is very much evident here. ...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 ...

    The scenes add some comic relief to the serious tone of the movie. Albert seems more like a caricature of the strong dominant character described in the novel The Color Purple. "In the novel, Mister is a heavy, mean and cold to Celie, humanized only by bis love for Shug

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

    bell hooks disagrees with Stuart and argues that Walker has gone back to the slave narratives (see page three for an example of a slave narrative) of the 19th Century which intended to tell people the truth about slavery. She also comments that the conditions for black women in the

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

    The film's exposition of mysticism in a wholly unsensational manner also gives it a distinct aesthetic. The sequence where the unborn child speaks to its future parents is presented in a matter-of-fact, everyday manner, placing spirituality and mysticism naturally within the community and culture of the Gullah.

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

    This is exemplified in letter 35, when Celie looks properly at her vagina for the first time with Shug. In Celie's culture at that time, a female's genitals were regarded as dirty and ugly, yet Celie described them in a fresh, new way- "inside look like a wet rose."

  1. Essay on The Colour Purple

    In this letter she said "Any more letters come? I ast. He say, What? You heard me, I say. Any more letters from Nettie come?" This shows that she can now stand up for herself and she makes it known that she is no longer invisible. By letter three, she has many more people to talk to, she writes to everything.

  2. The Colour Purple - letter to Celie

    I write this letter to say I is sorry, to 'give it to you straight, just like it come to me'. When you left you said 'until you do right by me, everything you touch will crumble.' This curse at that time was funny to me, I laughed.

  1. The Color Purple is too concerned with the personal experiences of Celie to be ...

    The Color Purple is a bildungsroman novel which charts the growth of protagonist Celie through letters; primarily from her to God, but later to her sister Nettie. The epistolary nature of the narration is frank and confessional; "I don't write to God no more, I write to you...he give me

  2. Discuss how Walker and Atwood present the self awakening of key characters within the ...

    Celie has a strong sexual attraction for Shug and states that "First time I got sight of Shug Avery's long black body with it black plum nipples look like her mouth, I thought I had turned into a man" Critic Philip Royster states, "It is through Celies awareness of the

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