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, won the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award in 1983—the following year it was challenged as inappropriate reading material for students.In the decades since, Walker has addressed censorship in speeches, essays and a book, —along with the letters to the editor and school board meeting minutes that detail the ideological battles waged over her art.
The Traditional Values Coalition proclaimed that your story “Roselily” “could easily be construed as anti-religious and anti-clergy.” And has been described with quite colorful language, including: “profanity,” “garbage,” “a feminist agenda at the expense of black men,” and “smut.” Why do you think these works were really challenged?
What are the real, underlying threats censors saw in these works?
This collection of essays represents a dispassionate scholarly effort to comprehend the essential elements of her prolific imagination, which celebrates women by chronicling their troubled journey from silence to self-expression and from pain to resistance.
The essays fall largely into three main groups, focusing on Walker's most famous and controversial novel, The Color Purple, on her poetry, which has for too long met with critical neglect, and on her ecofeminist novel, The Temple of My Familiar.
From the irate Black Muslim brothers led by Louis Farrakhan's former national spokesperson, Dr.
Khallid Muhammed, who filed past Walker at a 1987 Founders' Day ceremony at Spelman College, to the NAACP-supported protesters in Los Angeles picketing The Color Purple film's premiere, Walker appeared headed for calumny, even demonization of the worst kind. In print reviews of both novel and film, the same passionate intensity was . (and one of America’s most censured writers) tells Megan Labrise about finding wisdom in the songs of ancestors, why her acclaimed novel won’t be translated into Hebrew, and approaching writing in a priestly state of mind.Immediately after the cataract was removed, Walker gained some self conf...Alice Walker is one of the most influential and controversial figures in twentieth-century American literature.In honor of Banned Books Week, Walker shared with us her thoughts on the artist’s charge, drawing strength from history, and what it feels like to wield the pen that has everyone up in arms.— was first challenged in Oakland, California schools in 1984—removed from or retained by schools and libraries after serious debates in 1985, 1986, 1989, 1990, 1992, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2002—and most recently challenged in Morgantown, North Carolina schools in 2008.At the age of 14, her older brother Bill felt his sister was suffering from severe depression and immediately arranged for the "cataract" to be removed, from a doctor in Boston.Her vision in her right eye never returned, even after the surgery.Let us examine in brief some of the grieved outcries of the first and third groups of readers.For these readers, their anger and hostility toward Alice Walker rests largely on her third and most polemical novel, The Color Purple (1982), and its film adaptation by Hollywood filmmaking guru, Steven Spielberg (1985), a work they claim distorts black history, demeans black men, and leaves in its "savage" wake a most deleterious impression of blacks.