Education in Black and White: Beware the Roadbuilders

radical eyes for equity

Nettie sees the world in a stark black and white once she faces and confronts the missionary zeal being done to the people who are native to Africa. The letters exchanged between Nettie and Celie, which constitute The Color Purple, are literally the lived stories of oppression and the oppressed right there in black and white for readers:

The first thing I should tell you about is the road. The road finally reached the cassava fields about nine months ago and the Olinka, who love nothing better than a celebration, outdid themselves preparing a feast for the roadbuilders who talked and laughed and cut their eyes at the Olinka women the whole day. In the evening many were invited into the village itself and there was merrymaking far into the night. I think Africans are very much like white people back home, in that they think they are the center of the universe…

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