Character Analysis of Celie, the Color Purple Essay

Words: 2663
Pages: 11

Being a black female in the south during the early 1900’s, at a time when white and blacks were socially segregated and women were absolutely inferior to men, was one of the many challenges Celie would be faced with in her lifetime. Born in 1895, Celie was raised on a farm in a small town in Georgia where formal education took a back seat to physical labor and household maintenance, and the Church was the main focal point of socialization among local town members.
We are first introduced to Celie in 1909, when she is 14 years old, running and frolicking through the fields with her sister Nettie, then giving birth to her second child by her step-father. Soon after the newborn was taken out of her arms, an emotionless and
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Jail.” Hope is lost as she watches Shug’s car drive away without her in it. Overcome with emotion, Celie collapses, completely disassociating herself from the world and the situation.
By the winter of 1930, some 14 years later, Celie begins showing signs of Adulthood in her general care for Sophia and her children. At the general store Celie provides hope and faith to Sophia when retrieving all of the items on the grocery list for Miss Millie and gesturing to keep her head up as she is driving away. She has cared for Sophia’s children during her 8 year jail sentence, as seen during the return of Sophia on Christmas day. During this period of time we see a change in Celie’s perception of herself through her clothing, body language, and her role within her extended family.
The spring of 1936 marks another dramatic turning point in Celie’s life. A newly married Shug returns to the farm, a letter is received from Nettie at the hand of Shug, and Celie finds out that Nettie is alive and that her two children are alive and have been raised by Nettie in Africa. Dozens of letters from Nettie were found in Albert’s (Mister) secret box, once again restoring hope, love and purpose within Celie. Reading the letters she imagines the African coast and the life Nettie and her children have lived. Their every experience becomes a concrete experience and thought within Celie. Her confidence has reached a climatic point and her voice and thoughts are finally heard