The novel The Color Purple by Alice Walker touches on the abuse Celie endures as a child, and expands upon the struggles she continues battling throughout her adult life.
The Salish Indians of the Montana and Celie, the main character of the book The Color Purple, are two examples of cultures that made them who they are.
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Interpreting God in The Color Purple
Historically, in Christian religions God and Jesus have been represented as white men. The main reason for this are white missionaries spread their religion to the other ethnic groups. Slaves learned about Christianity from their white masters. White men were drawn in pictures to represent the images of God and Jesus. Celie, Shug, and Nettie rejects the idea that God was white and formed their own beliefs.
In the beginning of the book Celie believes God is a white man, which eventually leads to her renouncing God. At that point in her life Celie hates all men. To her God is a man; therefore he will do her no good. No man in her life has ever done anything but hurt her, she expects no more from God than she would from any other man. "I say, the God I been praying and writing to is a man. And act just like all the other mens I know. Trifling, forgetful and lowdown ? (pg 199). All her life Celie has seen the pictures of the Virgin Mary, Jesus, and God they have all been of white people. To a black person living in that time period a white person was an authority figure, someone to be feared. She cannot have a close relationship with a white God because it makes him too intimidating. When Shug asks Celie what she thinks God looks like she responds, "He big and old and tall and graybearded and white. He wear white robes and go barefooted. Blue eyes? She ast. Sort of bluish-g!
ray. Cool. Big though. White lashes ? (pg 201).
By the end of the novel Celie resumes her faith in God, but a different kind of God. Her talks with Shug, her letters from Nettie, and her overall happiness with life helps her decision. She addresses her final letter to God. "Dear God. Dear stars, dear trees, dear sky, dear people. Dear Everything. Dear God ? (pg 292). Her new God represents life and all that is good in the world. Thinking of God in this new light Celie is able