Alice Malsenior

6001 Words Jun 25th, 2013 25 Pages
Alice Walker: Peeling an Essence As an African- American novelist, short–story writer, essayist, poet, critic, and editor, Alice Walker’s plethora of literary works examines many aspects of African American life as well as historical issues that are further developed by Walker’s unique point of view. Writers like Alice Walker make it possible to bring words and emotions to voices and events that are often silenced. Far from the traditional image of the artist, she has sought what amounts to a personal relationship with her readers. She has also taken positions of passionate advocacy, most notably in her campaign against ritual genital mutilation of young women, a practice still institutionalized in many parts of the world, as well as …show more content…
Alice concentrated and studied hard in school. She graduated as valedictorian from her high school and went on to attend the local Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. She was greatly influenced by one of her professors there named Howard Zin, who she worked closely with on civil rights rallies. She became a volunteer for registered voters of Georgia and began attending political rallies for civil rights. Zin would eventually become an influence for some of Alice Walker’s later writing. In 1963, Walker left Spelman for Sarah Lawrence College, a place housing only a handful of African American people, most of them men. This was Walker’s predecessor to participating in many civil rights demonstrations and meeting Martin Luther King at his home in recognition of her invitation to the Youth World Peace Festival in Finland (Bates, Alice Walker: A Critical Companion). 1964 was the turning point for Alice Walker. Realising that she was pregnant she contemplated suicide and slept with her razor under her pillow for three nights (Bates, Alice Walker: A Critical Companion). During the same week, Walker again turned to writing as a natural outlet for her distress. She stopped writing only to eat and sleep. Thankfully, through the help of a friend, Walker was able to attain a safe abortion. The end product of weeks of anguish was, among other things, a story entitled “To Hell with Dying” and with the help of teacher Muriel Ruykeyser this was published in
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