The Color Purple
by Alice Walker
Analysis: Three Act Plot Analysis
For a three-act plot analysis, put on your screenwriter’s hat. Moviemakers know the formula well: at the end of Act One, the main character is drawn in completely to a conflict. During Act Two, she is farthest away from her goals. At the end of Act Three, the story is resolved.
Celie is raped by her Pa, gives birth to children that are taken away from her, gets married, and loses Nettie. In every possible way, Celie is a victim.
Mr.__’s mistress moves in and Celie falls in love with her. She discovers all the letters from Nettie that Mr.__ hid all these decades. Celie finally finds her voice, stands up for herself, and leaves Mr.__.
Celie starts her own life, indulging her interest in sewing pants and starting a small clothing business. Celie waits for her sister to come home. She learns all about Nettie’s life in Africa and her children, Olivia and Adam. Mr.__ changes and the two of them become friends. Eventually, Shug and Mr.__ become like family. And then, at long last, Nettie comes home—and brings her husband and Celie’s children.