celie challenge conventional gender roles W r i t i n g
English 224 FORMAL ESSAY (The Color Purple and Object Relations Theory
In Alice Walker’s novel, The Color Purple, Celie’s journey toward self-discovery is one that has been guided by Shug Avery, who functions as what is known in object relations theory as the good enough mother. As such, Shug enables Celie to gain, in adulthood, the psychological development more typically obtained in one’s childhood.
Choose either question A or question B and write a 3 to 4 page essay in response to it:
A.Object relations theory asserts that growth takes place in the shared space between a good enough mother (who creates a safe enough environment for the child to take risks in) and a child. Write an essay in which you explore the journey Celie takes toward self-realization in The Color Purple as facilitated by Shug functioning as the good enough mother. You may want to consider some of these points:
- Identify both some of the key ways that Celie changes and grows as a result of Shug’s role as good enough mother and the effects these changes have on her life and others’ lives
- Explain how Shug functions as the good enough mother
- Explore how the act of writing (letters) factors into Celie’s journey toward self-discovery
B.In accordance with object relations theory, to be whole (complete), people need to acknowledge and integrate both their male and female sides. Write an essay in which you explore, in light of this concept (which we studied in class), how Shug and from Shug’s influence, Celie challenge conventional gender roles to become more complete people. You may want to discuss how part of Shug’s influence comes from Shug’s role in Celie’s life as the “good enough mother.”
What is expected of you in this essay? What is expected is that you:
- Make sure you write to the prompt and all points go back to your controlling idea, which proves the prompt
- Provide enough context for your points to make clear to your reader the situation you write about
- Explain, illustrate, explore points (claims) and prove them with quotes, MLA formatted, and some paraphrasing. Analyze the quotes or evidence once stated
- Write in terms of cause/effect relationships and comparisons/contrasts for fuller, more organized paragraphs
- Address the Ws when relevant (who, what, where, when, how)
- Write a cohesive essay, meaning each paragraph should naturally follow from the previous one.
- Choose points that are essential, not random
- Avoid separating sections and labeling them like chapters. Your essay should read seamlessly and speak for itself
Note: Please do not use secondary sources in your essay. I only want your own voice, your own analysis and reference to object relations theory as we discussed it and from the gleanings on it distributed in class.
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