Characters In Zora Neale Hurston's Spunk

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One of the most important elements of a story, whether it’s a Shakespeare play, a science- fiction or a Harlem renaissance story, is the use of characters. Authors use their characters to help assist them in getting their message across the reader. In her short story “Spunk” Zora Neale Hurston uses her characters to help develop the plot line while also showing how dramatic a character can change. With the help of the community members, Joe finally stands up to Spunk, (the towns strong man.) Through this ordeal, Spunk is forever changed for this is the moment that caused him to open up something that fear would take control over. He learns that although he was strong and could easily kill Joe, he himself would ultimately be his own downfall. Joe is the antagonist even though he is the weaker one between himself and Spunk. Joe knows that his beloved wife Lena has the hots for Spunk, but he has absolutely no intention of getting her back. There is even a full paragraph on the first page that explains his feelings on the situation. This paragraph allows the reader to understand Joe on a deeper level. One phrase fully describes his feelings, “One could actually see the pain he was suffering, his eyes, his face, his hands and even the dejected slump of his shoulders”(1). This description comes right after the men comment on the fact that his wife Lena, was seen walking arm and arm with Spunk a few moments ago. Joe seems to be painted as a pushover, but it’s not until one of
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