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Harlem Renaissance presents Zora Neale Hurston

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Leah Michael

on 18 January 2013

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Transcript of Harlem Renaissance presents Zora Neale Hurston

Jump at de Sun! January 7th, 1891 is the guessed date of birth for Hurston, but since she was often dishonest about her age her actual date of birth is unclear.
Ms. Hurston was born in the town of Eatonville, Florida. Eatonville which was thee first all black community to be incorporated. Ms. Hurston was one of the pre-eminet writers of 20th century African American literature. "She could tell you to go to hell and make you enjoy the trip.." She was bodacious, outrageous! "She wasn't afraid to shake things up..." " A southern black women who wanted to be a writer living in a
white world of letters." " Ms. Hurston was independent and didn't care what you
thought of her." "When she spoke it was like music..." "Like the dead-seeming, cold rocks, I have memories within that came out of the material that went to make me. Time and place have had their say. " - Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on the Road This is her story. This is her life. This is her song. This is Zora Neale Hurston... She has influenced such writers as Ralph Ellison, Toni Morrison, Gail Jones, Alice Walker and Toni Cale Bambara. Ms. Hurston influence Robert Hemingway's The Harlem Renaissance Remembered. She was very fiesty and somewhat...ronchy. Hurston parents Lucy Ann Potts and John Hurston were both former slaves. She had two other siblings by the name of John, the youngest, and Sarah, the eldest.
Ms. Hurston did not have a relationship with her father seeing that he
preferred her sister over her, and even resented her birth. Young Hurston
suffered the death of her mother at the age of nine. Soon after her father
remarried and moved on sending his children away to relatives until she was old enough to work on her own. by Carl Van Vechten "Mama's child..." "That hour began my wanderings," she later wrote. "Not so much in geography, but in time. Then not so much in time as in spirit." Hurston's mother "exhorted her children at every opportunity
to 'jump at de sun' . We might not land on the sun, but at least we would
get off the ground." Her father was the protagonist in her life often threatening to break her spirit ,having no hope himself, in the Negro spirit to pursue change insisting that sooner or later Hurston would fall
victim to white "passes with ropes and guns." Ms. Hurston was one who was "driven inward".
Her father would tell her not to be an ambituous Black so she would stop being black.
He told her she couldn't have a horse- a "sin and shame!" he called it, so she made up. The Inside Search To support herself and finance her efforts to get an education, she worked various jobs, including as a maid for an actress in a touring Gilbert and Sullivan group. presents Harlem Renaissance "I am not tradgically colored. There is no great sorrow damned up in my soul, nor lurking behind my eyes. I do not belong to the sobbing school of Negrohood who hold that nature somehow has given them a lowdown dirty deal and whose feelings are all hurt about. Even in the heller-shelter skirmish that is my life, I have seen that the world is to the strong regardless of a little pigmentation more or less. No, I do not weep at the world- I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife." presents 1920 Zora went on to achieve her associates degree from Howard University majoring
in anthropolgoy. (ElizebethVan Dyke as Zora Neale Hurston in the
film Jump at de Sun.) Hurston admired this particular that
once seemed like a pipe dream after
the death of her mother. Zora knew
about Howard's reputation for
scholastic excellance. She knew it was
for Negros what Harvard could do
for whites. -Zora Neale Hurston "How It Feels To Be Colored Me" (1928) Here Hurston began one of her earliest
works posted in the school newspaper called
the Hilltop, the first and only newspaper at a
historically black college in the U.S. Hurston
was the co-founder of the Hilltop. Her material
was more so directed toward providing
guidance for student journalists. Though it was not professional it steadily progressed into a forum for African American writers to hone their journalistic skills and fought against negative stereotypes and instill pride. 1989 – Protests over the appointment of Harvey Leroy "Lee" Atwater to the University's Board of Trustees 1994 – Isabel Wilkerson, The Hilltop editor in chief for the 1981-82 school year, wins the Pulitzer Prize 2004 – The Hilltop is again named the Best Collegiate Newspaper in the nation by the Princeton Review. Alpha Beta Zeta! During those fast pace college years Ms. Hurston was also known to have been apart of the Alpha Beta Zeta Soroity. This organization was form in the year of 1920 by five coeds on January 16th. Their goal was to educate the public, assist the youth, provide schloarships, support organized charities, and promote legislation for special and civic change. Ms. Hurston was one who never failed to let her presence be known. She became well known not only for her writing, but also for her outspokenness, her distinct way of dressing and her refusal to be ashamed of her culture.
During the early years of her writing career in the 1920s she rubbed shoulders with other writing artists like: Langston Hughes Zora became close friends with Langston Hughes, another great writer. In 1930 Zora, Langston and their typist collaborated on a play. Zora wrote the play and Hughes created the plot. Zora was unwilling to share the writing credit and sent the copyright with only her name on it. Langston threatened to sue.

Devastated Langston ended his friendship with Zora Neale and Charlotte Mason. "I have the nerve to walk my own way, however hard, in my search for reality, rather than climb upon the rattling wagon of wishful illusions."
- Letter from Zora Neale Hurston to Countee Cullen Hurston had great academic interests and continued to pursue
further education recieving a scholarship from Barnard College. There
Zora continued in her study of anthropolgy with mentor Franz Boas. She
was the only black student, and the only one known to have graduated from the institution with a B.A. degree in 1928. HEY..! What is anthroplogy? Anthropology is the study of human beings and all their cultural diversity. The data from her scholarship work and creative writing came from
her years growing up in all-black Eatonville, Florida, and she drew upon the
keen insights and observations gained from anthropological research in crafting her fictional work. Zora was a collector of African-American
Folktales. She later brought the stories together
in a book entitled Mules and Men( 1935) Blackface Performer Bert Williams A drama set in the 1920s, where free-spirited Janie Crawford's search for happiness leads her through several different marriages, challenging the morals of her small town.
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