1. The Color Purple is a novel about an African American woman named Cecil who struggles throughout life. She had to take the part f her mother when she passed away, and during that time her father rapped. She had two children which she never met. Soon after that she is forced to marry another man who already has children. The children as well as her husband are cruel to her and do not respect her. After a couple of years she adjusts to the life. Her sister Nettie moved in with them for a while but when she refused to have a relationship with Cecil’s husband she was told she could no longer live there. When Nettie left the house she went to be a servant for an African couple and later became a missionary with them in Africa. Cecil not only morns with the loss of her sister but also with the fact that her husband cheats on her with a singer named Shug. After years of having Shug live with them Cecil begins to form a physical as well as emotional relationship with Shug. Together Shug and Cecil discover letters from Nettie to Cecil that her husband had been hiding from her. When Shug announces that she is leaving Cecil says that she will leave as well, she gets the courage to tell her husband how she really feels about him. Cecil begins her own store and becomes very successful. She goes back to the town to discover that her husband is a changed man and while there she is reunited with her sister.
2. The theme of this novel is that strength can be hidden in the people that appear to be weak. This theme mainly applies to Cecil because she started off as a push over and ends up being independent. She is pushed around by everyone at first and then comes out being strong. She dealt with her father abusing her and then with the abuse of her husband. Shug was the person that Cecil needed to push her to be strong.
3. The tone in this novel is serious and tragic. Though there is a couple of happy moments in there it is mainly filled with sad ones. Since the very beginning Cecil introduces the fact that she was raped and her tone was very somber. She had a very difficult life and spoke of it with a serious tone. The majority of her life was not very good and enjoyable for her. Even when Nettie sent the letters they always contained serious topics and a tragic tone to all she said. Toward the end of the novel it begins to brighten up a bit but Cecil still speaks with a tragic tone.
4. The literary elements in this novel were diction, zenith, and characterization. The diction was used with the slang that Cecil spoke in. It was effective by making this novel more realistic as well as making Cecil more realistic. The zenith occurred when Shug and Cecil found the letters from Nettie. This was a turning point for the way the story took place because Cecil’s attitude changed after this. The characterization added a better idea f the characters. It helped make sense of why they did what they did. For example the death of Cecil’s husbands ex wife explained his cruel attitude.