Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/11503
Breaking the silence. The search for a voice in Alice Walker‘s The Color Purple
Alice Walker’s novel The Color Purple is the story of Celie, a woman oppressed and silenced by the men in her life and the society she lives in. She is raped by the man she knows as her father and twice impregnated by him. Her children are taken away from her and her hand in marriage is given to a physically and mentally abusive man. This essay look at how Celie, and other women in the book, are exposed to silence, who the silencing forces are and how they overcome the difficulties this silence poses. Furthermore the argument is made that in order for everyone in the community to have an equal voice the gender-roles must fade away and women must be allowed to take on male characteristic and men must be allowed to take on female characteristics.
The first part of the essay depicts how different women in the novel are exposed to oppression and how they are silenced. It discusses the different kinds of silence they must endure and how they cope with it and try to break free. The second part of the essay scrutinizes the agents of silence in the novel, the men, society and God. The importance of education and the a understanding of God are put forth as important aspects towards women’s claim for independence and personal freedom. The third, and last, part of the essay focuses mainly on how Celie is able to break away from the silence she has been subjected to throughout her life and how her revolt changes her life and in turn the life of the people around her.