Alice Walker Essay

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Alice Walker

     Alice Walker is an African American essayist, novelist and poet. She is described as a “black feminist.”(Ten on Ten) Alice Walker tries to incorporate the concepts of her heritage that are absent into her essays; such things as how women should be independent and find their special talent or art to make their life better. Throughout Walker’s essay entitled “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens,” I determined there were three factors that aided Walker gain the concepts of her heritage which are through artistic ability, her foremothers and artistic models.
     “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens” touches mainly upon family heritage and the way her heritage was created. In
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Walker takes into account through her fellow foremothers the different issues that they dealt with and tried to expand and include the concepts of independence that appear to be absent in her mind. In the African American Review, Woodard states a similar concept, “…indicates how Hurston serves as a model, as Walker formulates, revises, and offers a critique” (Woodard 170).
     As Walker uses Hurston as a role model, she develops that idea into her essay as to why every African American woman should have a model, whether through art or heritage. In Donna Haisty Winchell’s book on “Alice Walker,” Winchell also explains how Walker tries to find the models that African American women should encounter. Walker characterizes, “the absence of models, in literature as in life” as “an occupational hazard for the artist, simply because models in art, in behavior, in growth of spirit and intellect- even if rejected- enrich and enlarge one’s view of existence”(14). This is directly from “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens” It clearly states that Walker thinks it is important to have artistic models so that women can start their independence and their talent. Winchell also states in her analysis that Walker’s anger at being deprived of appropriate models comes out in one of her most famous essays “In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens” (15).
     Towards the end of Walker’s essay, she states,

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