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Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

The color purple represents all the good things in the world that God creates for men and women to enjoy. At the beginning of the book, you could say that Celie has no sense of the color purple. She has such a horrible life that she’s not stopping to smell the roses—she’s just surviving. By surviving, we mean that she’s practically dead emotionally, but is physically alive. Shug is the person who points out the concept of the color purple to Celie. Shug says that God does little things for people, like creating the color purple, just to make people happy and give them pleasure in their lives. God wants people to notice the beauty of his/her creation. According to Shug, enjoying the beauty of creation includes all of God’s creation, including sex. Shug teaches Celie that enjoying life is exactly what God wants us to do; it’s a way of expressing our love for God. As Celie does learn to love life, she decorates her bedroom in her own home in all purples and reds.

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