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22 Feb 2012

RTW: Black History Month

Welcome to our 118th Road Trip Wednesday!

Road Trip Wednesday is a ‘Blog Carnival,’ where YA Highway's contributors post a weekly writing- or reading-related question and answer it on our own blogs. You can hop from destination to destination and get everybody's unique take on the topic.
This Week's Topic:

February is Black History Month and it's also the month of Valentine's Day. So let's show some writerly love by answering the following question: Who is your favourite African American author or fictional character?
No doubt about this one.  Celie from The Color Purple.  I read it twice throughout my studies, once at school and then at uni and adored her character.  I became emotionally attached to the character from the first few letters when she's a young girl, already a mother to two children she believes to be dead, and being passed on to an older man.  There she's nothing but a slave.  The journey she takes through the novel is incredible.  There's so much suffering and sadness in her life that when the ending comes and her life has turned around for the better you're relieved.  You want to cry when she does and laugh when she laughs. 
She's a perfect example of character development.  As a teenager she isn't well educated and very naive.  She's just a young girl being sold off as a wife and she's scared.  She keeps her mouth shut and does what she's asked.  By the time she's an adult she's starting to gain a sense of who she is, first through her sexuality.  It's the first step in Celie allowing herself to feel like she's somebody.  It develops slowly through sexuality to ambition to the point where she turns on her husband and finally stands up for herself. 
It's an amazing read through the eyes of an amazing character and if you have had a chance to read The Color Purple by Alice Walker, get it on your list! And track down the film too!


  1. Yeah, Celie's a great character. There are a lot of fantastic female characters in that book.

  2. This is one of those rare books where I thought the movie was as good as the book. Great choice!

  3. The movie was great (and that so rarely happens, especially with such a powerful and beautifully written story). Great choice.

  4. It is a great movie. And that is one of those "ought to read" novels--especially if the movie represents it so well.

  5. Is it embarrassing for me to say that I still haven't read this OR seen the movie? I am way behind on a lot of awesome, classic literature. I need to get on this one.

  6. I had no idea until yesterday that I really haven't read (m)any (?) books with African American characters in them. That I can recall anyway. Looks like that's something I need to remedy.

  7. The film had me in tears just like the novel did. Jaime and Crystal, it's an amazing read. Whether you can track down the novel or film first I recommend them. You get so emotionally attached to the characters.