Zora Hurston Sweat Analysis

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Before I began reading, I tried guessing what the story was about. Only knowing that the title was “Sweat”, I thought the story might be about sports or hard labor. Then I opened up the story and the first thing I noticed was that the author’s name was Zora Hurston. I only found out that the author was female once I saw “her” in the section below describing her life and writing career. I found out other important things such as she lived in Florida, she wrote during the Harlem Renaissance (1920s), she died impoverished, and her work was eventually found by the women’s movement. Taking all of this into account, especially the women’s movement part and the fact that she was a woman as well, I made a more accurate guess that the story would be…show more content…
However shortly after, I saw Delia Jones would most likely be the main character. I took in the description of Delia’s occupation and had no clue about what the story would actually be about until Sykes was introduced into the story. Sykes tossing the bull whip onto Delia’s shoulder like it was a snake seemed pretty cruel since it caused her to scream in terror. When I read, “Sykes, what you throw dat whip on me like dat?” (65), I immediately realized Delia was African American and soon after with more dialogue, I realized Sykes was African American also. Reading the rest of the dialogue during their argument was actually kind of comical due to Hurston writing how their dialect would sound. I could tell that the story was going to be about some major conflict between Sykes and Delia. Tension increased when Hurston wrote that Delia “seized the iron skillet from the stove and struck a defensive pose” (67). Sykes was clearly a very bad husband and when I read, “Two months after the wedding, he had given her the first brutal beating” (67), I wondered why Delia had stayed with him for fifteen…show more content…
Also when Walter Thomas says, “It’s too bad, too, cause she wuz a right pretty li’l trick when he got huh” (68), I learned that Sykes really had done a number on her physically and emotionally. That went on for a awhile and I really got the point that nobody except Bertha liked Sykes. Whether it was intended or not, I thought Bertha being described as “a hunk uh liver wid hair on it” (70) was quite funny. Later on, when Sykes gets the rattle snake, it’s clear he has crossed the line and Delia is done putting up with him. Her normal meekness towards Sykes is gone and when she said “Ah hates you, Sykes” (72) then continued to tell him how extremely much she hates him, I knew with certainty she had enough and was going to do something. Tension increased even more when she was almost became the next meal for the rattle snake. When she left the house and let Sykes walk in without warning him, I was glad and hoped he would get bitten since he really deserved it. He did get what he deserved and I thought it was a pretty good ending. I also remembered that on page 67, Delia said to herself, “Oh well, whatever goes over the Devil’s back, is got to come under his
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