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The Color Purple

The Color Purple

by Alice Walker

Pants

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

When Celie finally breaks free of Mr.__ and patriarchal society, she becomes a person rather than an oppressed woman. Her transformation into a full, unrepressed woman is symbolized by pants. For most of her life, Celie never wore pants because she (and the society she lived in) considered pants to be men’s clothing. When Celie decides not only to wear pants, but to start a successful business in making pants for both men and women, she has become freed from gender stereotypes. Pants, therefore, are a symbol of liberation from patriarchy and sexism as well as economic liberation.

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