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Possessing the Secret of Joy
Possessing the Secret of Joy
Author: Alice Walker
A provocative novel about an African tribal woman’s battle with madness after the trauma of a childhood genital mutilation.
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ISBN-13: 9780151731527
ISBN-10: 0151731527
Publication Date: 6/30/1992
Pages: 286
Rating:
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 19

4.1 stars, based on 19 ratings
Publisher: Harcourt
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio Cassette
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Possessing the Secret of Joy on + 41 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A great, important book, but very disturbing.
reviewed Possessing the Secret of Joy on + 19 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Powerful and disturbing. A chilling story of a strong woman assaulted by her society's norms. Walker's literary skills are unsurpassed, and she tells a beautiful story.
nutmeg avatar reviewed Possessing the Secret of Joy on + 11 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Awesome literature. I think it is a MUST READ for everyone.
Minehava avatar reviewed Possessing the Secret of Joy on + 791 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Pulitzer Prize winner Walker illustrates the truism that violence begets violence in this strong-voiced but often stridentan obvious novel? and polemical novel. The focus of Walker's rage is the practice of female circumcision in African cultures. Her tale concerns Tashi, a character who made fleeting appearances in The Color Purple and The Temple of My Familiar , and who here represents an archetypal figure, not so much a woman as a mouthpiece for feminist distress. Tashi grows up in a small African village but initially escapes the customary clitorodectomy. Eventually she is coerced into having the operation as a means of offering fealty to the sinister politician called Our Leader. When she moves to the U.S. with her husband and assumes a new identity as Evelyn Johnson, her pain and anger, accumulating the suffering of the ages, bubble to the surface in a lingering madness that therapy does not assuage and thatwhy not delete this next phrase (through 'finally') as point is made in previous sentence and 'accumulate' is repeated, and incorporate the point about "the ages" into the previous sentenc finally culminates in murder. Walker tells the story in very brief chapters, each loaded with the sense of the historical importance she wishes to convey, but the fragile narrative cannot support the weight of her overwrought prose. Walker's protest against ok? author's "message" in the last review "what men . . . do to us" cannot be faulted; its guise as a novel, however, can.
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reviewed Possessing the Secret of Joy on + 36 more book reviews
From the author of the Color Purple, this is a continuation saga of one of the characters who struggles with the custom of female circumcision.
reviewed Possessing the Secret of Joy on + 69 more book reviews
This is an amazing book. Offers a window into a world that most of us are unfamiliar with.


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