Study Guide

Anne-Marion in Meridian

By Alice Walker


To an uninitiated viewer, Twilight and Buffy the Vampire Slayer look pretty similar. Both feature sexy vampires, kind-hearted werewolves, and copious amounts of teen angst. But—not to cast shade on you Twilight fanatics—Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a piece of '90s television history that will live on in eternity as the single greatest television show of all time...

Wait, what was our point? Oh yeah: Anne-Marion and Meridian are a lot like Twilight and Buffy.

After becoming friends in college, Anne-Marion and Meridian join the Atlanta-based Movement together. So far so good. On the surface, these two fiercely intelligent young women are fighting for the same reason: to achieve equal rights for minorities, women, and the poor.

Underneath, however, they have some deep-seated ideological differences. Meridian hates the idea of wealth and dreams of a world where everyone sits on an even-playing field. Anne-Marion, on the other hand, "wanted blacks to have the same opportunity to make as much money as the richest white people" (1.15.7). More specifically, Anne-Marion wants the opportunity to be rich herself.

See, Anne-Marion is scared of suffering. In her mind, her ancestors have struggled enough for everyone and the "idea of suffering" itself is "obsolete" (1.15.46). Again, her differences with Meridian are plain to see—Meridian "volunteers to suffer" alongside the poor and disadvantaged people of the world (1.1.74). Anne-Marion is well-aware of these differences and ashamed of them. That's why her letters to Meridian always slip into anger and resentment: she knows that she's the Twilight to Meridian's Buffy, the slightly inferior and far less original version of the same thing.

Fortunately, these two friends end things on a positive note. First, Anne-Marion sends Meridian a picture of a new branch growing out of the Sojourner's stump, symbolically representing Meridian's own return to health and her work for the Movement. Then, Truman has a vision of Anne-Marion arriving at the house (as he once did) to pick up where he and Meridian leave off. Hey, so maybe there's hope for a Twilight and Buffy crossover after all—we'll be waiting with bated breath.