The Color Purple

The Color Purple

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The Color Purple Letter 88 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Nettie writes to Celie, saying that Adam and Tashi have returned from the mbeles, where they saw a large number of Africans, from various tribes, living together and attempting to counteract English rule.
Again, it is not clear whether the mbeles want a revolutionary overthrow of colonial forces, or simply a space for Africa villages to coexist with the English.
Themes
God and Spirituality Theme Icon
Race and Racism Theme Icon
Violence and Suffering Theme Icon
Self-Discovery Theme Icon
Samuel and Nettie decide to go back to America, however, because 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 ritual. Tashi takes this as evidence of the seriousness of his request, and their marriage is sealed and celebrated. This new family—Nettie, Samuel, Olivia, Adam, and Tashi—are now to head back to the US.
Adam's gesture to receive the same facial tattooing that Tashi did is an indication of his desire and willingness to be an equal to her. His love is not one of domination but of sharing. The return to America heightens anticipation of a reunion between Nettie and Celie, and Celie and her long lost children.
Themes
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