Alice Walker

Essay by lcobb001University, Bachelor'sA+, January 2006

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Women have become a driving force in literature today and one of the most influential and respected of these women that have fought to have their voice heard is Ms. Alice Walker. From humble beginnings, Ms. Walker has made it her life's work to become a voice for countless women that haven't been able to make their own known. Fighting many battles of her own has given Alice the strength and wisdom to share, through her writing, the unseen and often secret battles of women past and present. She expresses, through her many works, the true empowerment of the spirit that comes with self discovery and hardship, making her a true literary genius in my eyes.

Alice Malsenior Walker was born to poor sharecropping parents on February 9, 1944 in the little farming community of Eatonton, Georgia (Kirkman). As Minnie and Willie Lee Grant's eighth child, it would have seemed hard for them to imagine that their daughter would become one of the most profound, controversial, and respected African-American novelists of the 20th century.

Coming from a rich cultural background, including a Grandmother who was a former slave and another who was a Cherokee Indian, has perhaps influenced Alice in her writings which seem to always tie in with human rights and equality (Kirkman). Walker got her beginning education at both Spelman College and Sarah Lawrence College, where she received her Bachelor's of Arts Degree in 1965 (Kirkman). Her first novel was published in 1970 and was titled, "The Third Life of Grange Copeland". This novel was just the beginning of a career that included the winning of a Pulitzer Prize and countless essays and novels exploring the subjects of rape, violence, isolation, troubled relationships, multi-generational perspectives, sexism and racism.

The first work I will discuss, and Alice Walker's...