The Colour Purple

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 10th grade April 2001

download word file, 7 pages 3.0

Characterization is a technique that authors use to impact upon the reader?s response to the text and allows for more developed and less stereotypical characters. In Alice Walker?s novel ?The Color Purple? the female characters are developed to have strong personalities. The male characters are developed by Walker to encourage the reader to see them as shallow and shadowy characters. Walker?s gender representation permits the reader to understand the situations the characters have been placed within.

The character of Celie in the text has many outstanding qualities which shine through especially in her many times of hardship. Walker has displayed Celie is a position of complete powerlessness, her powerlessness is due to her race, gender and economic status. The fact she is black, female and poor place her in the position where she is disempowered through no fault of her own. Celie realizes her position when she states ? I?m pore, I?m black, I may be ugly and can?t cook?.

Celie realizes and accepts this fact and eventually becomes aware that she is a person who deserves to be looked at as a person. This highlights Celie?s strong character who believes in her self and strives to be successful eventually.

Through Celie?s constant abuse from Mr _____ she remains almost emotionless to the beatings, verbal abuse and rapes. Walker has used naturalization in the development of Celie?s character to show Celie?s acceptance of the constant violence as everyday life. The naturalization of her acceptance reinforces her strong willed character, Celie?s reaction to the abuse make her stronger and actually increases her determination to climb out of her position and rise to a position of power.

Walker has constructed Celie as a mother like figure to her sister Nettie. Celie?s motherly instincts where displayed...