Zora Neale Hurston Quotes
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Zora Neale Hurston was an influential author of African-American literature and an anthropologist, who portrayed racial struggles in the early-20th-century American South, and published research on Haitian voodoo. The most popular of her four novels is Their Eyes Were Watching God, published in 1937. She also wrote more than 50 short stories, plays, and essays.
Hurston was born in Notasulga, Alabama, and moved to Eatonville, Florida, with her family in 1894. Eatonville would become the setting for many of her stories and is now the site of the Zora! Festival, held each year in her honor. In her early career, Hurston conducted anthropological and ethnographic research while attending Barnard College. While in New York, she became a central figure of the Harlem Renaissance. Her short satires, drawing from the African-American experience and racial division, were published in anthologies such as The New Negro and Fire!! After moving back to Florida, Hurston published her literary anthropology on African-American folklore in North Florida, Mules and Men; and Moses, Man of the Mountain. Also published during this time was Tell My Horse: Voodoo and Life in Haiti and Jamaica, documenting her research on rituals in Jamaica and Haiti.
Hurston's works touched on the African-American experience and her struggles as an African-American woman. Her novels went relatively unrecognized by the literary world for decades, but interest was revived after author Alice Walker published an article, "In Search of Zora Neale Hurston", in the March 1975 issue of Ms. magazine. Hurston's manuscript Every Tongue Got to Confess, a collection of folktales gathered in the 1920s, was published posthumously after being discovered in the Smithsonian archives. Her nonfiction book Barracoon was published posthumously in 2018.