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The Writings of Zora Neale Hurston Examine the Relationships Between the Sexes

Powerful Essays
The Writings of Zora Neale Hurston Examine the Relationships Between the Sexes

African-American literature is the voice of a race and a people who have a very passionate existence. They have existed in harsh conditions in this country for many, many generations. Their stories told orally, and those that were eventually written down, describe life as members of African tribes forced to adapt their cultural beliefs to a new way of life, slaves with almost no rights or respect, finally free men and women, and as American citizens who are also black. In their writings the reader comes to understand the African-American history and community. By far, one of the most wonderful, fascinating aspects of the African-American community is the emphasis on the relationships between the sexes.

Authors such as Alice Walker, Lorraine Hansberry, Toni Morrison and many other wonderful female writers give their readers an understanding of the beauty, pain, ecstasy, and confusion that exist in the relationships of African American men and women. All of the authors mentioned are female because ìtheir literature is about black women; it takes the trouble to record the thoughts, words, feelings, and deeds of black women, experiences that make the realities of being black in America look very different from what men have writtenî(Washington 35). Zora Neale Hurston, one of the most famous and passionate black writers of the twentieth century, wrote many stories about women and their relationships. ìThe Guilded Six-bits,î and ìMagnolia Flowerî are two examples by Hurston in which the female characters play a large role in the dynamics of the story and the relationship. In these stories, the men and women find their roles as lovers, her...

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...lack, Reading Feminist: A Critical Anthology. Ed. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. New York: Meridian, 1990. 307-317.

Hurston, Zora Neale. The Complete Stories of Zora Neale Hurston. New York: Harper, 1995.

Lionnet, Francoise. ìAutoethnography: The An-Archic Style of Dust Tracks on a Road.î Reading Black, Reading Feminist: A Critical Anthology. Ed. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. New York: Meridian, 1990. 382-394.

Saidi, Pouria. ìIndividualism and the Issue of Race in the Works of Zora Neale Hurston.î Brighton High School, English Department Webpage. (1997): Online. Available: http://www.bcsd.org/BHS/english/mag97/papers/hurston.htm

Washington, Mary Helen. ìThe Darkened Eye Restored: Notes Toward a Literary History of Black Women.î Reading Black, Reading Feminist: A Critical Anthology. Ed. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. New York: Meridian, 1990. 30-43.
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