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Lunch » Tags » Book » Reviews » Their Eyes Were Watching God: A Novel » User review

Definitley on my list of best literature

  • Jun 5, 1998
  • by
Rating:
+5
I too read this book in college and was so moved. I have since become a fan of Zora Neale Hurtston and turned my daughter onto her when she had to make a reading selection and she also loved it. The lyrical true-to-life and scenery as well as the rich metaphors and analogies is just priceless. When asked to name my best reads, this was the first thing put down. How how wish Ms. Hurston was still around to impart such great writing.

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More Their Eyes Were Watching God: ... reviews
review by . December 17, 2010
From time to time, I come across a book that makes me moan for all the good reviews I've written, rows of stars and high marks I've given, because now I need more and they've all been used up for lesser work. More stars, more high marks, needed here. Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God is such a book. And I knew it the moment I opened it to the first page, the first line, that I had come across an author of extraordinary mastery of her art.    "Ships at a distance …
About the reviewer
Dera R Jones Williams ()
Ranked #984
Dera is a writer, editor, genealogist, writing mentor, researcher, and family historian, and she is active in local literary and national literary circles. She is the keeper of family stories, archivist … more
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Wiki

At the height of the Harlem Renaissance during the 1930s, Zora Neale Hurston was the preeminent black woman writer in the United States. She was a sometime-collaborator withLangston Hughesand a fierce rival ofRichard Wright. Her stories appeared in major magazines, she consulted on Hollywood screenplays, and she penned four novels, an autobiography, countless essays, and two books on black mythology. Yet by the late 1950s, Hurston was living in obscurity, working as a maid in a Florida hotel. She died in 1960 in a Welfare home, was buried in an unmarked grave, and quickly faded from literary consciousness until 1975 whenAlice Walkeralmost single-handedly revived interest in her work.

Of Hurston's fiction, Their Eyes Were Watching God is arguably the best-known and perhaps the most controversial. The novel follows the fortunes of Janie Crawford, a woman living in the black town of Eaton, Florida. Hurston sets up her characters and her locale in the first chapter, which, along with the last, acts as a framing device for the story of Janie's life. Unlike Wright and Ralph Ellison, Hurston does not write explicitly about black people in the context of a white world--a fact that earned her scathing criticism from the social realists--but she doesn't ignore the impact of black-white relations either:

It was the time for sitting on porches beside the road. It was the time to hear things and talk. These sitters had been tongueless, earless, eyeless conveniences all day long. Mules and...
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ISBN-10: 0060916508
ISBN-13: 978-0060916503
Author: Zora Neale Hurston
Genre: Teens
Publisher: Harper Perennial
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