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ANTH 3240 Lecture Notes - Bell Hooks

Course Code
ANTH 3240
Allyson Mitchell

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Lecture Two: The Color Purple
January 11, 2011
The Theme of Love
bell hooks
Defines love as “the will to extend one’s self for the purpose of nurturing one’s own or
another’s spiritual growth”
Does not want people to think of love solely in the romantic sense
-Treats it as a spiritual and revolutionary act
-The idea of love in society is largely fabricated and propagated by mass media
-Love has transformative powers
Fear, Anxiety and Dread
These are fears of revolutionary action (love)
-This leads to oppression and the use of aggression
-hooks believes that love can be used to overcome racism and sexism
Social change through action
-Ethics of caring: a sense of empathy for oneself and others, taking action to help
-Action is the only way that change can be attained
Celie’s Significant Relationships
Celie’s younger sister
-Love of education (Celie learns how to read and write from her sister, who is more
educated then herself)
-Nettie shows Celie that others are feeling the same experiences that she is, and that it
is not an individual occurrence (adds context and history to the life and experiences of
her sister)
In the film, Nettie is one of the most important relationships that Celie has
-Film ignores the complicated relationship that Nettie has with Samuel and Corrine
-In the film, Nettie comes home from Africa because Mister arranges it to atone for
hiding the letters from Celie (this does not happen in the book)
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