During the 1920s, there was a period that was called the Harlem Renaissance, during which African Americans got the opportunity to be creative and express themselves through music and art. Langston Hughes and Louis Armstrong were a few of the famous people who came from this period in the 1920s. Another famous person that came out of the Harlem Renaissance was Zora Neale Hurston, a multi-talented African American woman who wrote stories that described the life and struggles of the 1920s through the stories she wrote. Hurston was an American writer, who was able to connect to the hearts of most people from all kinds of different races and religions during the period. Even today, her readers still feel the connection Hurston was trying to make
In Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937), Zora Neale Hurston quotes: “She knew now that
Hurston and Janie both endured oppression during their lives based upon their race and gender however, their strong wills propelled them threw unforeseen obstacle. Zora Neale Hurston was a phenomenal African American woman whom despite her rough childhood would become one of the most profound authors of the century. Throughout her lifetime she was the, “Recipient of two Guggenheims and the author of four novels, a dozen short stories, two musicals, two books on black mythology, dozens of essays, and a prizewinning autobiography” (Gates 4). Hurston had to overcome numerous obstacles because of her gender, economic status, and racial identity. Hurston was born in 1891 in Notasulga, Alabama but grew up in Eatonville, Florida. Her mother died when she was thirteen-years-old, and as a result, her father sent her to boarding school shortly after. Overcoming many odds, Hurston graduated from Barnard college in 1927 with her
Zora Hurston uses vivid imagery, natural diction, and several literary tools in her essay “How It Feels to Be Colored Me”. Hurston’s use of imagery, diction, and literary tools in “How It Feels to Be Colored Me” contributes to, and also compliments, the essay’s theme which is her view on life as a “colored” person. Throughout “How It Feels to Be Colored Me” Hurston carefully incorporates aspects of her African American culture in an effort to recapture her ancestral past. Hurston’s use of imagery, diction, and use of literary tools shape her essay into a piece of Harlem Renaissance work.
Zora Neale Hurston’s writing in Their Eyes Were Watching God, reflects the Harlem Renaissance through Janie 's individuality, and departs from the Harlem Renaissance with the common recurrence of black woman empowerment. In the novel, Hurston reflects the ideas of the Harlem renaissance with the ways in which Janie rebels and goes against norms for women.
As Maria Tai Wolff says “for telling to be successful, it must become a presentation of sights with words. The best talkers are “big picture talkers”. For Hurston, the construction of African American identity requires a voice that can make you see, a voice that celebrates the visible presence of black bodies.
Zora Neale Hurston’s book, “The Gilded Six-Bits” is an important piece of literature due to its impact on the world during the Harlem Renaissance era. It is considered a brilliant piece of modernist literature due to Hurston staying true to her background and roots as a black woman from the south, in which segregation was still a huge issue. The reason why it is considered a piece of modernist literature is because she wasn’t afraid to write in the black vernacular which was considered uneducated as blacks were progressing in arts, literature, and the music was alive. The story is filled with many different themes and issues that people can relate to such as money, deceit, and for people who have a big heart forgiveness and reconciliation.
In the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Hurston, Janie’s story reflects the beliefs of the Harlem Renaissance by showing the theme of pride, and disappointment. In the Harlem Renaissance one of the main themes of the African American’s art was pride, and to fight on gaining progress even though thee African Americans were an oppressed race in America. After Janie's kiss grandma had this to say, “Yeah, Janie, youse got yo’ womanhood on yuh.” This is an example of how grandma wants Janie to grow up and become a respectable black woman with pride. Also, this novel shows the theme of disappointment.
Desire is a general and popular human sensation. Zora Neale Hurston discusses many instances of desire in Their Eyes Were Watching God. The novel portrays numerous varieties of desire that demonstrate the protagonist, Janie’s alteration from wanting an object to desiring a specific idea throughout the novel. As Janie acquires her own desires and possibly lives a better and more fulfilling life, Hurston indicates that these desires are in fact not structured by Janie’s own thoughts and experiences, but rather implicated by antagonists in the novel and also often making Janie the desired focus. Through the first four chapters of Their Eyes Were Watching God, Hurston allows Janie to experience multiple life altering desires that mold her into
In this book, Hurston uses symbolism to illustrate that contentment is more meaningful than fitting into society. Janie’s hair plays a big role in this book. It brings out her power and unique identity, but Jody takes that away from Janie. Jody sees that Janie’s hair attracts some of the townspeople, so he makes Janie wrap her hair and hide it.”
Janie's three marriages play crucial roles as elements in her development as a person and as a woman. Countless allusions and symbols crafted by Zora Neale Hurston flow fluidly throughout the novel and allow for the reader to understand Janie Crawford’s journey and extensive development. These recurrent patterns serve to better illustrate abstract concepts in the novel. Hurston's powerful use of symbols and allusions work to describe Janie’s relationships along with clarifying and intensifying the telling of Janie's story and growth.
Joseph’s Campbell’s The Hero With a Thousand Faces is a valuable novel for college students because it allows the reader to apply common elements in mythic adventures that easily connect and explain the journey of the protagonist. In Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God, offers an excellent example of The Hero’s Journey. The book follows Janie Mae Crawford on her adventure in finding herself. The adventure is described within three main steps that make up The Hero’s Journey; the departure, the initiation, and the return. Through these steps, we follow Janie as she leaves her known world and travels into the unknown world.
Life is time intervals of change that move each and every person with each passing moment, and reflect the world around us. Literature frequently reflects the culture along with the emotions and feelings of the environment and people around us. The novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, takes us through the life of Janie Crawford, a black woman in the early 1900’s, and her journey for love and identity through three different marriages. Janie’s different experiences and what goes on around her reflects how Zora Neale Hurston’s writing is both a reflection and departure from the ideas of the Harlem Renaissance, from the influence of slavery, and the re-emergence of stereotypes, respectively.
Zora Neal Hurston, first published “Sweat”, in 1926. The story is about a hard-working woman who is the sole provider for her household and she is subjected to physical, mental, and verbal abuse by her husband who is unemployed and insecure. During these times, women were looked at as submissive and obedient. Women were abused and worked through their blood, sweat, and tears. Black women were hired by white men/women to take care of their children and be the homemaker of their home and had to maintain the upkeep of their homes, children, and husbands. Zora Neal Hurston was 1 of many authors who left an impact on society. As Delia worked hard to Take care of her home, her husband as unemployed which made him insecure. Delia was also trapped