Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960)
Contributing Editor: Robert Hemenway
Classroom Issues and Strategies
While there are no particular difficulties in teaching Hurston, some students find the dialect hard to understand. To address this problem, I usually read several passages aloud to help students get a "feel" for the voices. Once they've heard Hurston read aloud, they can create her characters' speech in their minds so that it is understandable.
Major Themes, Historical Perspectives, and Personal Issues
Interface between oral and written literature
Significant Form, Style, or Artistic Conventions
Short story structure
Representations of an oral culture
Always a complex issue when postulating the audience of a black writer.
Comparisons, Contrasts, Connections