The Color Purple : Zora Neale Hurston

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Literary Analysis 2: Hurston’s Influence on Walker Alice Walker’s love of Zora Neale Hurston is well known. She was the only one who went looking for Hurston’s grave. She describes her journey to get to the unmarked grave in her book, In Search of Our Mother’s Gardens. During that journey, Walker started to feel as if Hurston is family to her, an aunt. “By this time, I am, of course, completely into being Zora’s niece… Besides, as far as I’m concerned, she is my aunt – and that of all black people as well” (Ong). Walker’s book, The Color Purple, was influenced by Hurston and her works. Walker was greatly influenced by Hurston and her book The Color Purple has similarities to Hurston’s book Their Eyes Were Watching God. Walker has openly admitted that Hurston has influenced her work, “Alice Walker willingly admits that her novel, The Color Purple, was directly influenced by Their Eyes Were Watching God” (ENG4U Literary Essay). She also wrote in the introduction of Their Eyes Were Watching God that “No book is more important to me than this one” (Walker a.k.a. ENG4U Literary Essay). Humans tend to imitate the things they like. Because of this influence, Walker’s book has a lot of similarities with Hurston’s book. For example, they have the common theme of black women going through social patterns throughout the era of the great depression in the South, emotionally and sexually. Both of the books try to keep with the dialect of the times as well. However, while there are similarities between the works, there are differences, which is good because otherwise they would basically be the same book. The Color Purple is about a young girl, Celie, whose life starts with being oppressed. Her step-father rapes her when she is too young to k... ... middle of paper ... ...rchin Movement, The Urchin Movement, 5 Feb. 2013, www.urchinmovement.com/2013/02/05/a-headstone-for-an-aunt-how-alice-walker-found-zora-neale-hurston/. Stanley, Julian. “A Look at American Literature.” Their Eyes Are Watching God: A Comparison, 22 Apr. 2010, jas08m.blogspot.com/2010/04/their-eyes-are-watching-god-comparison.html. Lindsey. “Links Between Hurston and Walker.” Lindsey's American Literature Blog, 25 Oct. 2009, rinneelovescupcakes.wordpress.com/2009/10/23/links-between-hurston-and-walker/. “ENG4U Literary Essay: The Color Purple and Their Eyes Were Watching God.” Imtiredofthisblackandblue, 13 June 2011, imtiredofthisblackandblue.wordpress.com/2011/06/14/eng4u-literary-essay-the-color-purple-and-their-eyes-were-watching-god/. Walker, Alice. The Color Purple. Harcourt Books, 1992. Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God. Perennial Classics, 1998.
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