Alice Walker Feminist Essay

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Alice Walker was born on February 9, 1944 a self-proclaimed womanist. Womanist is a term that she is credited with creating and means a black feminist or a feminist who is a woman of color. Alice was the youngest of eight children who grew up in the rural south. Alice lived and was educated during the time of the ‘Jim Crow Laws’. It was a period of time when the education for blacks was of such a low and inferior quality when compared to the educational standards provided for white Americans as the funding ratio was considerable not in proportion. States, local government and communities actively permitted racial segregation across health, medical, educational and housing lines which continued officially until 1965 and who some feel, still …show more content…
It is clear that some of the characters in her stories have some facet of Alice in them. When Alice writes, the focus of her stories is on the struggles of women and the journey they take to discover themselves and their strengths. An incident from Alice’s childhood (she was shot) caused her to go blind in one of her eyes. There was scarring and that caused Alice to be stared at, taunted and ridiculed. As a result of the injury and scarring, Alice was very shy and self-conscious around others. This reminds me of the character Maggie from her short story, “Everyday Use”. Maggie is described as being scarred from a fire and Maggie is also shy and self-conscious. Alice was able to find the strength in herself to overcome her injuries and make a bright future, similarly Maggie was also able to overcome her inner conflict using a quiet strength and dignity. Alice stated in an interview that the injury had significance for her as it changed her perspective on how she views people. She was able to “really see people and things, really to notice relationships and to learn to be patient to care enough to see how they turned out…”

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