Zora Neale Hurston

American folklorist, novelist, short story writer

1891   -   1960

movement: Harlem Renaissance
country of citizenship: United States of America
educated at: Howard University, Columbia University, Barnard College
occupation: anthropologist, historian, novelist, writer, journalist, folklorist
award received: John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, National Women's Hall of Fame, Florida Women's Hall of Fame, Florida Artists Hall of Fame, Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards
influenced by: Fannie Hurst, Franz Boas, Ruth Benedict

Zora Neale Hurston (January 7, 1891 – January 28, 1960) 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 with her family to Eatonville, Florida, in 1894. She later used Eatonville as the setting for many of her stories. It 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 a student at Barnard College. She had an interest in African-American and Caribbean folklore, and how these contributed to the community's identity. She also wrote fictional treatment about contemporary issues in the black community and 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 wrote and published her literary anthropology on African-American folklore in North Florida, Mules and Men (1935), and her first three novels: Jonah's Gourd Vine (1934); Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937); and Moses, Man of the Mountain (1939). Also published during this time was Tell My Horse: Voodoo and Life in Haiti and Jamaica (1938), documenting her research on rituals in Jamaica and Haiti. Hurston's works related both to the African-American experience and her struggles as an African-American woman. Her novels went relatively unrecognized by the literary world for decades. Interest was revived in 1975 after author Alice Walker published an article, "In Search of Zora Neale Hurston", in the March issue of Ms. magazine that year. Hurston's manuscript Every Tongue Got to Confess, a collection of folktales gathered in the 1920s, was published posthumously in 2001 after being discovered in the Smithsonian archives. Her nonfiction book Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo", about the life of Cudjoe Lewis (Kossola), was published posthumously in 2018.
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Their Eyes Were Watching God

1937 novel by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston


Mules and Men

1935 book by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston


Mule Bone

play by Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston

author: Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston


1926 short-story by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston

Seraph on the Suwanee

1948 novel by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston


Color Struck

play by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston

Jonah's Gourd Vine

Zora Neale Hurston's debut novel

author: Zora Neale Hurston


Moses, Man of the Mountain

novel by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston


Dust Tracks on a Road

autobiographical book by Zora Neale Hurston

author: Zora Neale Hurston


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