Powerful Characters and Powerful Themes in Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café

1435 Words 6 Pages
One Southern novel shines light on racism, feminism, and surprising lesbianism. Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café by Fannie Flagg, published in 1987, is about the different events happening and people living in Whistle Stop and Birmingham, Alabama. Fannie Flagg uses many powerful characters to enforce several themes. Idgie, Ruth, Evelyn, Mrs. Threadgoode, Big George, Artis, and Jasper are a few of the main characters that help Flagg show the themes though out Fried Green Tomatoes . Fannie Flagg was born in Birmingham, Alabama on September 21, 1941. She was born as Patricia Neal but changed her name later (Thompson 186). William and Marion Neal were Flagg’s parents. At a young age Flagg fell in love with acting and …show more content…
There, Flagg worked for a variety of local news programs but worked her way up to acting in movies, shows, plays, and musicals (186). She shifted to writing when she was in her late thirties. Now she lives in both Santa Barbara, California and Birmingham, Alabama. Flagg started writing again because she felt something was missing from her life (Thompson 187). Flagg wrote a short story for the Santa Barbara Writer’s Conference and won first place. She started writing full-time after her first book did very well. Most of Fannie Flagg’s novels are set in small towns in the South (“Fannie”). She weaves themes of racism and feminism into her novels, because these are issues she feels strongly about (Stanley 86). Her novels give power to those who didn’t always have it, mainly women and African Americans.
Fried Green Tomatoes is one of Flagg’s novels that has themes about race and gender. Fannie Flagg originally started writing Fried Green Tomatoes because she received a shoe box full of items from her Aunt Bess. The Whistle Stop Café was based in a café Bess owned in Irondale, Alabama; both are located near railroad tracks (Stanley 85). In an interview Flagg said that she actually formed the Whistle Stop Café before anything other characters (Stanley 85). Charles Champlin wrote that the novel is a great blend if jokes, anger, murder, and Alabamian life. Champlin also said Flagg showed “what it was like to be
Open Document