What language techniques are used in this novel please?
Jessica Pope | Certified Educator
The Color Purple uses dialect and a letter-writing structure to create a sense of intimacy between Celie (the narrator) and the reader. Readers are brought into Celie's inner world of thoughts and feelings. The first few letters are written to God, but Celie eventually starts writing letters to other friend and family members (having concluded that God isn't receiving her letters). The combined result of the dialect and letter-writing structure gives the reader a sense of knowing Celie personally. This effect wouldn't be as pronounced if the book were written in first-person or in standard chronological order. Celie also recieves letters from her sister Nettie, an upper-class educated woman who left the community to live in Africa. The letters that Nettie writes are verbose and written in standard English. The juxtaposition of Nettie's letters to Celie's letters provide important insights about the radical differences between the sisters' experiences.