Chapter 1 Introduction
As a famous African-American female writer, Alice Walker makes a great influence in African American literature. The Color Purple is considered as her greatest work and wins the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award for her. Therefore, it is necessary to make a brief introduction to Alice Walker, including her life experience and further her work The Color Purple.
1.1 Introduction to Alice Walker
Alice Walker, one of the most famous and influential writers in the contemporary American literature, has made a great contribution to the development of the African American literature. She is an African American novelist, poet, short-story writer and a woman activist. Alice Walker was born in the small rural of Eatonton, Georgia in 1944 and was the eighth child in her family. Suffered from poverty and her bad-tempered father during her childhood, she led a miserable life and had an unhappy childhood. When she was four years old, she was enrolled into school. Unfortunately, at eight years old, she was shot blind and scarred in the right eye by one of her brothers’ BB gun, which was a fatal blow and left an unforgettable shadow on the outgoing girl. From then on, her life was totally changed and she became an introvert girl. The forever scar on her face made her inferiority in such full discriminated society. Just as Alice Walker once said in an interview, she thought she was ugly and disfigured and others’ frequent insults made her timid and shy (O’Brien, 1973:327). The accident, however, did not prevent her from being stronger in her study and even her life. Despite the loss of her eyesight, she insisted on reading and writing and buried herself in the approach of knowledge. Finally, as a diligent student, she finished her study with top grades.
1.2 Introduction to The Color Purple
Once the publication of The Color Purple in 1982, people around the whole world attached a great importance to it. It gained increasingly popular and attention and was regarded as the greatest work of Alice Walker. In 1984, this novel was adapted into film by famous director Steven Spielberg and then it gained an increasing popularity in the world. Meanwhile, it is necessary to read this novel when making researches on black literature and women literature. The Color Purple is written in an epistolary style and constituted of 92 letters, including Celie’s letters written to God and Nettie who is the sister of the protagonist and Nettie’s letters addressed to Celie. The setting of this novel is in the rural Georgia in southern America from the early 20th century to the eve of the Second World War and the main &