How do I thoroughly analyze the symbolism of purple in the book The Color Purple? I need quotes supporting the symbolism of purple and an in-depth analysis of what purple symbolizes on the book....

How do I thoroughly analyze the symbolism of purple in the book The Color Purple?

I need quotes supporting the symbolism of purple and an in-depth analysis of what purple symbolizes on the book. please help, it's for my final assignment...

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e-martin | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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There are three steps for this kind of assignment. 

First, find instances of purple appearing in the text. In the case of this novel, there are not very many occasions where purple appears. This is a good thing as it means that you will have only a few moment of text to consider in determining the meaning of this symbol.

The most important occurrence of the color purple in the text comes when Shug and Celie discuss God. Shug tells Celie that God is not best pictured as a man, but as existing in all things. The color purple is cited as one of the things that Celie should take note of, as an element of God, a beautiful and playful creation to be enjoyed. 

Second, examine characters and situations from the novel that connect with the ideas associated with the color purple.

Celie, Shug, Nettie, Albert, Harpo and Sofia are all characters that learn to recognize the beauty and the inner life of others. Celie, especially, changes her conception of God in accordance with Shug's views. She also learns to recognize her own beauty and value. 

Finally, articulate the connection between the idea or theme associated with the color purple and the larger themes of the novel. In essence, the task of the third step is to draw a through-line from the ideas explored in step one and those in step two. 

 

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