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Finding Your self . The Secret Life of Bees , The Color Purple , and The Bell Jar. Sue Monk Kidd. Born in Sylvester, Georgia, in 1948 Majored in nursing Inspired by Thoureau’s Walden and Kate Chopin’s The Awakening Enrolled in a writing class after she was married

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finding your self

Finding Yourself

The Secret Life of Bees, The Color Purple, and The Bell Jar

sue monk kidd
Sue Monk Kidd
  • Born in Sylvester, Georgia, in 1948
  • Majored in nursing
  • Inspired by Thoureau’sWalden and Kate Chopin’s The Awakening
  • Enrolled in a writing class after she was married
  • Started out as a non-fiction writer but changed to fiction when she wroteThe Secret Life of Bees in 2002
  • Usedthe power and spirituality of women in many of her novels
the secret life of bees
The Secret Life of Bees
  • 14 year old, Lilly Owens, goes on a search to find out about her mother and in reality herself


  • Feminine power is represented by four black women:
    • RosealeenDaise
    • August Boatwright
    • June Boatwright
    • May Boatwright
  • Controversy of black and white
    • Dates someone of a different race
  • Maturity
    • Stands up to her father
    • Grows mature enough to forgive her mother


  • Lilly runs away to find out about her mother
  • Gains courage and independence


  • Use bee keeping as an example to teach Lilly about love, sisterhood, and independence
    • ''Let's imagine for the moment that we are tiny enough to follow a bee into a hive. Usually the first thing we would have to get used to is the darkness... -Exploring the World of Social Insects

Sunflower and Bees

  • Ginette Fine Art LLC
alice walker
Alice Walker
  • Born in Eatonton, Georgia in 1944
  • Youngest of eight children
  • Parents believed education was very important; went to school and college
  • Worked as a teacher, social worker, and lecturer
  • An accomplished poet and essayist but best known for her novels
  • Won the Pulitzer prize for The Color Purple
  • “Don't wait around for other people to be happy for you. Any happiness you get you've got to make yourself.” – Alice Walker
the color purple
The Color Purple
  • Celie is abused and undermined by her stepfather and husband
  • Epistolary novel
    • Dear God
    • Letters to Nettie in Africa


  • The effect of rape and abuse
    • “Dear God, I am fourteen years old. I have always been a good girl. Maybe you can give me a sign letting me know what is happening to me” – Celie
    • "You better not tell nobody but God. It'd kill your mammy" - Alphonso
  • Strong Women
    • Shug
    • Sofia


  • Celie has to find the courage to stand up to her stepfather and husband
  • Celie takes what she learns about independence and passes it on to Squeak


  • The letters from Nettie is what keeps her alive and her hopes up
  • Celie making pants
    • Form of independence

By Golden Pear Art

sylvia plath
Sylvia Plath
  • Born in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, in 1932
  • Was a perfect student and won a scholarship to Smith College and internship to work in New York
  • Wrote 400 poems while at Smith
  • Wrote an autobiography of her life, The Bell Jar, in 1963
  • Committed suicide at the age of thirty
the bell jar
The Bell Jar
  • Esther Greenwood is a unhappy young women “living the life” during the 1950s


    • The uncertainty of what her life is and what it should be drives her crazy
  • Misconception
    • Esther seems to have everything
  • Men push her further away
    • Buddy Willard
    • Doctor Gordon


    • Wants to become writer
    • Doesn’t achieve the goal of finding herself
    • Tries to commit suicide many times
    • Lives in a mental home…


  • The bell jar
    • Represents the minuteness of her life
    • Feels like she’s trapped inside
    • “sour air”
  • Perfection
    • Envies Doreen for being perfect
finding them selves
Finding Themselves
  • The Secret Life of Bees
    • Lilly runs away to find out about her mother
    • Uses the strong, feminine power of the Boatwright sisters to gain independence
  • The Color Purple
    • Abused and undermined by her step father and Mr. ____
    • Shug is the role model that encourages Celie
    • Celie in return helps Squeak
  • The Bell Jar
    • Didn’t achieve the goal of finding yourself
    • The searching drove her insane
similarities and differences
Similarities and Differences
  • The protagonist of Secret Life and Color Purple both accomplish their goal
  • They both use the feminine power around them
  • The Bell Jar doesn’t accomplish this goal
  • The first two characters come from abused families and Esther comes from a good family
  • "Sunflowers & Bees Watercolor Painting by Ginette." Art Prints by Ginette Fine Art LLC. 2012. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.Flanagan, Mark. "Sue Monk Kidd." Contemporary Literature. 2012. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.
  • No One, but Me | The Secret Life of Bees. 2010. Slide program. 

Youtube. 13 Aug. 2010. Web. 5 May 2012. <>.  

  • The Color Purple - Best Scene. Dir. Stephen Spielberg. 

Youtube. 13 Dec. 2007. Web. 5 May 2012. <>.  

  • "Alice Walker Biography." A&E Networks Television. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.  

  • "Alice Walker Quotes." 

BrainyQuote. Xplore. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.  

  • "Memorable Quotes for the Color Purple." 

IMDb. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.  

  • "Biography of Sylvia Plath." 

Sylvia Plath. Web. 5 May 2012. <>.  

  • Arriola, Drew. "Sylvia Plath Reads "The Stones"" 

YouTube. YouTube, 10 May 2008. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.  

  • "Google Images." 

Google Images. Web. 18 May 2012. <>.(picture of sunflower, sleeping woman, and bell jar)