Alice Walker's Themes of Womanism, Community, and Regeneration

1968 Words Apr 28th, 2011 8 Pages
Li 1

Angel Li
Mrs. Harper
English 6H
7th February 2011 Alice Walker's Themes of Womanism, Community, and Regeneration Alice Walker is considered one of the most influential African American writers of the 20th century, because of her raw portrayal of African American struggles and the injustices towards black women. She was the first African American female novelist to win both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award for The Color Purple. Her work is appealing and powerful because “Walker's novels can be read as an ongoing narrative of an African American woman's energence from the voiceless obscurity of poverty and racial and sexual victimization to become a reshaper of culture and tradition” (Gray 527). Through
…show more content…
The female community also heals Celie, whos newly acquired freedom effects both the men and women. Walker also advocates spirituality in her theme of womanism. According to Bloom, “Walker's spiritual beliefs are dependent on her womanist philosophy, and vise versa. Her womanist philosophy is a type of spirituality, one that arises from her movement away from the traditional Christianity in which she was raised” (64, 2000). Shug becomes a medium that Walker uses to depict her growing connection to spirituality and a way for Celie to build a relationship with nature, earth, and herself. Furthermore, Celie's letters are based on Walker's idea that writing is a spiritual practice for females to find peace and reflect their thoughts in a racist and sexist society. Bloom goes on to suggest that “ Walker's womanist and spiritual concerns would not exist without her belief that her writing is an individual and communal intervention into a racist and sexist fabric she sees in American culture” (66, 2000). Because women were not allowed to have a voice, Walker writes the novel in the form of letters, where Celie can reveal everything. Lastly, Walker shows her criticism of the injustices shown towards African American women by both blacks and whites. In the novel, “the men are generally pathetic, weak and stupid when they are not heartlessly cruel” (Wilson 1587), which made The Color Li