It’s hard to overstate the literary and cultural influence of Alice Walker’s Pulitzer-prize winning novel The Color Purple. In the nearly forty years since its publication, this story of Black women coming of age in early twentieth-century Georgia has inspired an Oscar-nominated film, a Tony-award-winning musical, and the work of many contemporary writers, including New York Times critic Salamishah Tillet. Join Tillet and WBEZ reporter Natalie Moore for a conversation about the ongoing significance of this seminal novel as detailed in Tillet’s In Search of The Color Purple.
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About the Book:
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Salamishah Tillet is a scholar, cultural critic, and activist. Previously a professor of English and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, Tillet was also a visiting fellow at Princeton and scholar-in-residence at the New York Public Library's Schomburg Center. She is currently the Henry Rutgers Professor of African American Studies and Creative Writing at Rutgers University-Newark, the faculty director of New Arts Justice at Express Newark, and a contributing critic-at-large at The New York Times. With her sister, Scheherazade Tillet, she founded A Long Walk Home, an art organization that empowers young people to end violence against girls and women.
Natalie Moore is the author of The South Side: A Portrait of Chicago and American Segregation. She is the South Side bureau reporter for WBEZ. Before joining WBEZ, she covered Detroit City Council for Detroit News. She worked as an education reporter for the St. Paul Pioneer Press and a reporter for the Associated Press in Jerusalem.