The Power of a Female Relationship In the book The Color Purple, Alice Walker shows us different themes in the book. The one theme that stood out the most was the relationship between the sisters and friends that met along the way. Reading this book I have seen different types of relationships such as, motherly, sisterly, and also womanly. Walker refers to the relationship between Cecile and Nettie as a motherly relationship because when Cecile’s mother dies she feels that she has to step in and take care of what her mother did.
Therefore; when Celie was pregnant Nettie was always there for her even when her father took Celie’s kids away. In the article The Parent Trap they used the fatherly role so it still fits the same way if it was a mother. This article says “regardless of age or gender the oldest child is responsible for playing the role of a mother/farther”. For example the child in the article was an 8 year old boy who had to take the role of his father, because the father had left them. So in his mind he was the Man of the house and had to look over his siblings and also help his mom out.
However, Walker shows us a similar instance with Celie; she was only 15 when her mother passed away, therefore; she had to take upon the role of the mother now which was to cook, clean, and take care of her siblings/ children. “Especially important for the formulation of Walker’s political themes are the novel’s portrayals of the dyadic female bonds that Celie forms with Nettie, Shug, and Sofia. They lead not only to Celies personal growth but also to the formation of a female solidarity network. It is this network of female friends that wages a strong challenge to racist patriarchal domination.
It offers the sexually and racially oppressed woman an alternative to basing her identity solely on her familial relationships and provides the support she needs to take action against abuse and discrimination. ” ( Hollinger, 1998, Pg 179) As for the relationship between Cecile and Nettie there is also a sisterly relationship. Cecile is the big sister to Nettie; she is more of the protector. When their father was trying to get to Nettie, Celie was always there for her sister to protect her from harm and that nasty man of a ather. Because Nettie was the more attractive one Celie knew that many older men wanted to marry her or have her so she was always there for her sister. While Nettie was the one who helped Cecile read and write. Nettie was the one that went to school and learned while Celie was at home taking care of the house and the children because their mother past away. Both were more like children then adults when together because they were running around, playing, acting like children that they are.
Even when Mister separated Cecile and Nettie they still had that sisterly bond when separated. Cecile knew that Nettie would never let her down; she was the main reason for keeping Cecile sane, and alive. From Essortment, their definition of a sisterly relationship would always have a feeling that Nettie wrote letters. This is relationship is “to flourish throughout adulthood, but like any other relationship it needs care and attention. It is easy to let other priorities get in the way, but maintaining your friendship with your sister is just as important. As Essortment states about the friendship between sisters and how it is just as important as a sisterly relationship; there are friendship relationships between Celie, Shug Avery and, Sofia. Friendship is as MWOLK blog defines it a “True friendship, perhaps is the only relation which survives the tribulations and trials of time as well as remains unconditional. ” For different people definition of friendship may vary, however it can be most often described as a unique amalgamation of much fun, trust, respect, love and loyalty.
Some of the usual traits of friendship can be strong attachments mutual respect and similar interests are what, most of the friends share with one another. There is a famous definition of friendship by Aristotle “A single soul dwelling in two bodies”, which states a sense of emotional safety and comfort among the two individuals. ” My interpretation of friendship is someone who is always there and understands you. Someone that is there for you through thick and thin and someone that does not go behind your back an disown you.
Even thou Women are exploited very seriously, especially Celie, who is married off to Albert to look after his children and is expected to work on the farm and submit without objection to all of Albert’s demands and those of the children. She is also meant to accept Albert’s affair with Shug Avery, which extends even to him sleeping with her under the same roof. Therefore; Shug Avery gave Celie the most trust, respect and loyalty. She gave her confidence and realized how much Celie is a major part of everything that goes on. Surprisingly, Celie and Shug develop an intimate relationship.
More than anyone, Shug’s influential presence and acceptance give Celie the strength she needs to redefine herself, take charge of her life, and leave Albert. Shug is a necessary angel who sings her way into the hearts and lives of The Color Purple’s downtrodden women, the impact of her arrival subtle but immense in the complexities of each character’s development. The women in The Color Purple are bound despite their differences, in a form of fractellite sorority and from the moment Shug touches Celie’s life, each woman in turn grows and gains strength from the experiences of the former.
I believe the catalystic moment in the series of change is when Shug sings the song that Miss Celie “scratched out of her head when she was sick” (Walker, 1995, p. 65). Celie feels loved for the first time since her sister Nettie was taken away from her. It is beautiful and maternal, the relationship that Celie shares with Shug. She nurtures the broken Celie until she heals of her past hurts and finds strength instead of weakness in her identity as a woman.
However, the relationship between Celie and Sofia was that Sofia showed her how to be a confident woman and be able to think for herself rather then what others think of her. However, while Sofia was in jail working in the laundry room she understood how Celie had survived all the beating, by just doin what she was told and never talked back. From that Sofia was able to survive while she was in jail, so from then on Sofia kind of looked up to Celie. However; when Sofia became a white woman’s maid and was unable to gather things like she use to.
Celie was there to help her out showing Sofia that there is someone out there that cares and is willing to help. In conclusion friendship is of a connection between two people that have things in common, and are helpful and caring to one another. As for Celie, Nettie, Shug Avery, and Sofia there are different types of friendship between these ladies and as they live there lives that bond that they have still lives on. They still have each others back and are still communicating. As the novel comes to an end the question still holds on my