Sexism and Racism in “The Color Purple” Essays

Decent Essays
I feel every person should care about sexism and racism, because these two issues affect everyone. “The Color Purple” is a great film that focuses on the problems African American women faced during the early 1900s. "The Color Purple" provides a disturbing and realistic account into the life of Celie, a poor southern black woman with a sad and abusive past and Sophia, another poor southern black woman with a sad and abusive past. Sexism is a form of discrimination based on a person's sex, with such attitudes being based on beliefs in traditional stereotypes of different roles of the sexes. Sexism is not just a matter of individual attitudes; it is built into the institutions of society. In the film, Walker…show more content…
Men need firm boundaries that define their sex role in order to keep them within the well respected category of masculinity. Women in the South knew their place in life were to cook and clean and to mind the men. They were denied masculine power in being forced into the domestic service, serving others. Black women were also forced to mind white women. After the Civil War, slavery might have been done with, but racism was not. Racism is the belief that some races are essentially, superior to others and therefore have a right to dominate them. In the United States, racism, particularly by whites against blacks, has created profound racial tension and conflict in virtually all aspects of American society. Until the breakthroughs achieved by the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s, white domination over blacks was institutionalized and supported in all branches and levels of government, by denying blacks their civil rights and opportunities to participate in political, economic, and social communities. So, blacks had a general sense of fear when it came to whites in the South. In the film, Walker displays the racism that black women in the south endured, such as when Harpo’s wife, Sofia, gets asked to clean a house by the white mayor’s wife. Sofia replies, “Hell no” (Spielberg, 1985). The mayor then slaps Sofia for her comment, and she punches him. She is beaten by white people to where they cracked her skull,
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