December 2, 2014

Dec 2

The Color Purple

Alice Walker


Bid Online Share: 

SOLD: $4,000

First edition, (first issue dust jacket), inscribed and signed on half-title: “I was mistaken. There is nothing more for me to say about this book! Alice Walker 2014.” It is hard for some authors to revisit old books, even when they are triumphs like The Color Purple, which won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 1983, and, of course, became a major motion picture directed by Steven Spielberg in 1985. It has the more dubious distinction of being number 17 on the American Library Association’s 100 most banned/challenged books between 2000-2009. As far back as 1982 the Oakland school board deliberated whether its language and depiction of sexuality was too intense for the city’s high school students (Walker won that round), but many school boards have challenged it in the years since.

WALKER, Alice (b. 1944). The Color Purple. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1982. 8°. Original half-cloth boards, dust-jacket.



© Pratibha Parmar

Alice Walker is an internationally celebrated author, poet, and activist. Her books include seven novels, four collections of short stories, four children’s books, and numerous volumes of essays and poetry. She is best known for The Color Purple, the 1983 recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Award. She was the first African American to be awarded the the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, though in her opinion, not the first African American woman to deserve it. The award-winning novel was adapted for Steven Spielberg’s 1985 film and later for the stage. It opened at New York City’s Broadway Theatre in 2005, winning a Tony Award for best leading actress in a musical in 2006.

Her work has been translated into more than two dozen languages, and her books have sold more than fifteen million copies. Walker has received many honors including the 2010 Lennon/Ono Peace Grant in Reykjavik, Iceland, and was inducted into the California Hall of Fame in 2006.