The Color Purple

The Color Purple

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Nettie's stepson and Celie's son, Adam grows up in Africa, raised by Nettie, Samuel, and Corrine. After the Olinka woman he loves, Tashi, undergoes the ritual facial scarring of her tribe, and then is ashamed of having done so, he undergoes the same scarring. He marries Tashi before moving back to the United States with his family.

Adam Quotes in The Color Purple

The The Color Purple quotes below are all either spoken by Adam or refer to Adam. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Pocket Books edition of The Color Purple published in 1985.
Letter 90 Quotes

And I see they [the children] think that me and Nettie and Shug and Albert and Samuel and Harpo and Sofia and Jack and Odessa real old . . . But I don't think us feel old at all. And us so happy. Matter of fact, I think this the youngest us ever felt.

Related Characters: Celie (speaker), Nettie, Mr. _____ (Albert), Shug Avery, Sofia, Harpo, Samuel, Adam, Olivia, Tashi, Jack and Odessa
Related Symbols: God
Page Number: 295
Explanation and Analysis:

This is the marvelous closing passage to the novel. After all that has happened to Celie and to Nettie - after all the miles Nettie has traveled, after all that Celie has been through in remaining in the South - time feels, in this passage, not to have passed at all. It is as though time itself was brought to a halt, or a new kind of time is here introduced. Celie and Nettie, reunited, can now make physical the bond that has united them in letters for years. And this bond is made even stronger by the presence of family, both biological and affiliative, that Celie and Nettie have assembled over the many intervening years. Despite their hardships, Celie and Nettie recognize that their stories are stories of family togetherness, of bonds made and sustained despite the incredible difficulty of their circumstances. The Color Purple thus ends triumphantly, as a celebration of the power of love in the face of violence and hatred.

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Adam Character Timeline in The Color Purple

The timeline below shows where the character Adam appears in The Color Purple. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Letter 2
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
...She also believes that Pa will do the same to the male child (later named Adam) to whom Celie gives birth not long after Olivia's birth. Pa is the father of... (full context)
Letter 49
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...from Nettie says that she, Nettie, is safe and happy, and so are Olivia and Adam. The letter implies that Nettie has been writing to Celie all along, but that, somehow,... (full context)
Letter 53
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...two children, being raised as adopted children by Samuel and Corrine, are named Olivia and Adam. Nettie promises to take care of these children in Celie's absence. (full context)
Letter 55
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...taken the job as an assistant to Samuel and Corrine, and as a maid to Adam and Olivia, overseas in Africa. Nettie also reports that she saw a woman acting as... (full context)
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...the continent and its people. She also reports that Samuel and Corrine believe Olivia and Adam have been sent to them by God. Only Nettie knows that Celie is their real... (full context)
Letter 56
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...Nettie sees Harlem, the largest black community she has ever experienced, and Samuel, Corrine, and Adam and Olivia collect money for their missionary activities from preachers and members of church congregations... (full context)
Letter 64
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Nettie feels extremely close to Olivia and Adam, but wonders whether, at this point, they should be sent back to Europe or America... (full context)
Letter 66
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...It is revealed that Corrine believes Nettie to be the biological mother of the children Adam and Olivia—and that Samuel is the father. Corrine has been living with this anger for... (full context)
Letter 80
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...Olinkans—they even had to buy their own water from the British—that Samuel, Nettie, and the two children sailed back to England, to figure out what they could do to prevent the village's... (full context)
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...life, soon fall to confessing love for one another, and they tell the same to Adam and Olivia during their month together in England. The children take to this news quickly... (full context)
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Meanwhile, Adam is upset because Tashi, with whom he has fallen in love, was planning, before Adam's... (full context)
Letter 81
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...facial scarring ritual common in the Olinka village, but is now ashamed of her face. Adam is kind to her and tends to her wounds, but Nettie reports to Celie that... (full context)
Letter 86
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Nettie ends the letter by saying that Adam has also disappeared, and she and Samuel believe he has gone into the jungle to... (full context)
Letter 88
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Nettie writes to Celie, saying that Adam and Tashi have returned from the mbeles, where they saw a large number of Africans,... (full context)
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...the Olinkan village has shrunk drastically, and most have left it to help the mbeles. Adam wishes to marry Tashi, and to prove this fact, he undergoes her same facial scarification... (full context)
Letter 90
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...not know who it could be, and Celie cannot believe her eyes: it's Nettie, Samuel, Adam, Tashi, and Olivia. Celie and Nettie are so shocked, upon being reunited, that they don't... (full context)
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
...for the first time. At the reunion, Celie remarks that the African family, especially Tashi, Adam, and Olivia "speak a little funny," but otherwise everyone feels at home. (full context)