Thursday, November 28, 2019

Sweat and the The Gilded Six-Bits; patience Essays -

Sweat and the The Gilded Six-Bits; patience Zora Neal Hurston was an amazingly talented writer, not just a good female, good black, or good for the time, writer. She was able to blend together the vernacular with an artistic and articulate prose to illustrate the lives of her characters. Hurston was a very important writer for African Americans, her use of phonological "black vernacular" or dialect wasn't a ground breaking or innovative idea, but it allowed her to cast a more realistic light on her characters. For they are real on the page, they each have their own sounding voice, and they each have character flaws. She is rather successful with Sweat and The Gilded Six-Bits in creating authentic feeling stories. If you were to analyze Zora Neal Hurston's short story Sweat you could see several different possible themes to focus on. The first theme I picked up on was an early form of feminism; she works, manages her finances, and built her own home. Obviously, she had been beautiful when he was younger, Walter Thomas said that she was a "pritty lil trick." Although she has been brutally victimized by her husband throughout their fifteen year relationship she's still able to pull an iron skillet on him in the beginning of the story, after he scared her with his whip and messed with her clothes. This single act of defiance changed her life with Sykes, "It cowed him and he did not strike her as he usually did." This could be a story of vengeance, I don't personally feel that this is what Zora meant for the story. Hurston foreshadows that Sykes will get what he deserves at the end when Delia mumbles to herself, "Oh well, whatever goes over the Devil's back, is got to come under his belly." Also, the act of scaring Delia with the whip could have foreshadowed his ultimate death by the bite of a rattlesnake. You could imagine that Delia purposely allowed for Sykes to die, but I like to think that she really was too scared to move. The story could be read where one could focus on the racial aspects of the story where Sykes hates the fact that Delia works for white people. She is the "good" person in the tale who labors for white people, and he is the "evil" man who hates whitey. I don't think this the direction Hurston had in mind for Sweat. He was just plain evil, race had little to do with the kind of man he was. The Gilded Six-Bits, is an entirely different story than Sweat. In Sweat there is a disequilibrium in the relationship from the beginning of the story with domestic violence, that eventually leads to Sykes cheating on Delia. In The Gilded Six-Bits, the main character Missy May, has a loving husband and a happy life, also, she cheats on her husband Joe. This story deals more with race, especially since Missy May had an affair with Slemmons, a white man. Slemmons wasn't just any white man, he was a rich white stranger from the north. Unlike in Sweat, where Sykes apparently had been beating on Delia enough to kill three women, Joe actually loves Missy May. The most telling scene of Joe's love for Missy May is when he comes home to find her chopping wood and he stops her, even though it could be Slemmons' child and not his. It is amazing that these two tales were written by the same person, the common theme I find between the two of them is that of patience. Patience truly is a virtue and in both of these stories, life gets better when one is patient. Sykes eventually dies a painful death, and Joe forgives Missy May

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