A Look at "Sweat" by Zora Neale Hurtson

Topics: Zora Neale Hurston, Domestic violence, Emotion Pages: 3 (955 words) Published: January 27, 2013
Robert Dickerson
Professor Melissa Parsons
Engl. 1100, Sec. 099
30 September 2012
A Look at "Sweat" by Zora Neale Hurtson
'The U.S. Department of Justice estimates that 95% of the victims of domestic violence are women, and they also estimate that a women is beating by their partner everyone 15 seconds in just the United States alone.' [ (Domestic Peace) ]. Domestic violence is something that is very prevalent in today's society. What makes it such an awful crime is that most people never really witness it because it happens behind the close doors of people's homes. Also, what makes it worse is that most of these women, who are the victims to these crimes, don't go and seek help, they just bottle up their emotions and angers and keep to themselves. In "Sweat" by Zora Neale Hurston, the main character, Delia, is a hard working wife in Florida who makes ends meat from her job cleaning other peoples clothes. She is a very good women but her husband, Sykes, is always trying to pick fights with her and harasses her with more methods than one. He treats her with no respect what so ever and even has a girlfriend that Delia knows about on the side. Sykes complains frequently about the size of Delia's figure claiming that she is too skinny. One day Sykes captures a rattlesnake and places it in their home, which scares Delia, who is terrified of snakes, to death each time she sees or hears it. Then when arriving home one day she sees the snake has gone missing from its cage and she immediately leaves her house. Skyes comes home not too long later and Delia watches him and he gets bitten by the snake. Delia could have gone and tried to get help but instead she just watched him die there because she did not love him what so ever anymore. Hurston truly captures all the feelings and emotions felt by Delia throughout the story. Hurston also gives a different perspective of the characters in the book by looking in on local people in the towns conversations about Delia and...

Cited: Domestic Peace. 2011. 30 September 2012 <http://www.domesticpeace.com>.
Hurston, Zora Neale. "Sweat." Literature for Compostion. Ed. Sylvan Barnet, William Burto, and William E. Cain. 9th ed. New York : Longman, 2010. 698-705. Print.
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