Born in Notasulga, Alabama, Zora Neale Hurston grew to become an icon in American literature. Zora’s parents were John and Lucy who played a significant role in nurturing her poetic background. Her prominence in literature has seen her works become important masterpieces of literature in America. Various articles have in the past been written to portray various themes which were contained in her works of literature.
Hurston’s achievement was how she described black people giving them a sense of satisfaction and completeness a feature that is not common in literature (xii-xiii).
2. Literary Works, Themes, and Characters
(a) Hurston goes further and writes about poor southern black folk and portrays biased negative image of blacks from the southern region in her works of literature.
(b) She uses narrative techniques to bring up a different vision of the back people, which she represents with reference to black women’s bodies. In some of her works of literature, Hurston links the female characters in the narrative with the distinctive landscape of the south (Clarke 601). It is meant to expound on the reversal process where women attain what rightfully belongs to them.
(c) The author also links her characters with elements of the environment, such as a storm, the sea, and a serpent which are evident in her works, TEWWG, Seraph and Sweat respectfully (Akins 33). These natural forces and animals assist the characters in attaining vengeance for the suffering they had undergone. Her works portray the struggle and fight for liberation by the black woman. For example, in Sweat, Delia is not pleased with how Syke treats her, and she condemns his actions verbally (Hurston 12). However, she finds herself hopeless when her husband passes on.
In conclusion, Hurston’s main concerns in her works were evidently about the freedom of the Blacks and also on women sexuality. This is because she is part of the Southerners and she understood vividly what they were going through.
Akins, Adrienne. “Just Like Mister Jim: Class Transformation from Cracker to Aristocrat in Hurston’s Seraph on the Suwanee.” Mississippi Quarterly, vol. 63, no. 1, 2010, pp. 31-43.
Clarke, Deborah. “The Porch Couldn’t Talk for Looking: Voice and Vision in Their Eyes Were Watching God.” African American Review, vol. 35, no. 4, 2001, pp. 599-613
Hurston, Zora N. Sweat: Novels and Stories. New York: Literary Classics, 1995.