The Color Purple

The Color Purple

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The Color Purple Letter 29 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Celie finds Harpo one evening in her house, crying to himself. Harpo is upset that he cannot get Sofia to obey him—this seems to be the source of some of his recent anxieties. Celie tells Harpo that Sofia is a good, hardworking wife. But Harpo wants to be larger in order to boss Sofia around—this is the implied reason for his eating so much.
Celie once again shows her talent for understanding the emotions of others. She feels that Harpo wants Sofia to obey, but she attempts to show Harpo that Harpo already has a great deal that Celie does not—including the love of a good spouse. But Harpo is not inclined to feel this love.
Themes
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Celie says that she married Mr. ____ to look after his children; the two do not love each other. Sofia and Harpo, on the other hand, really do love one another, and Celie tells Harpo that this ought to make him happy. But when Celie mentions how slender Mr. ____ is, Harpo, thinking of his own recent fatness, becomes sick to his stomach, and vomits outside. Celie puts him to sleep upstairs.
Celie attempts to convince Harpo by showing just how miserable her life with Mr. ____ can be, even though Mr. ____ "makes her mind." Harpo's vomiting, here, is an indication of his uneasiness regarding his "tough man" routine. But his father's influence is too strong to make him give up this thirst for power all together.
Themes
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Men, Women, and Gender Roles Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon