How It Feels To Be Colored Me, By Zora Neale Hurston

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Zora Neale Hurston a writer, and anthropologist wrote about her life in 20th century America in “How It Feels to Be Colored Me.” This work is rendered as an important part of African American history. In this essay, Hurston describes her self-awareness of the injustice as well as her appreciation for herself as who she is. Hurston describes her life until the age of 13 in Eatonville, Florida an all-black town. As a young girl, Hurston portrays her innocence of not knowing the difference between white and black people. She claims that the only difference between whites and blacks was that whites always seemed to pass through town. Hurston describes her adventurous and naive self: she would become aware of her race when all the white folks …show more content…
In Jacksonville, she was not “...Zora of Orange County anymore, [she] was just a colored little girl.” She became cognizant of the racial injustice in her stay in Jacksonville, but still, she was not deeply affected by it. She sought to look at her position in life as not “tragically colored.” She was not mad or upset that she was damned by the creator like those at her high school did (Hurston). Instead, she was thrilled with the opportunity of this racial game, in where she could “..get twice as much praise or twice as much blame.” Over time, she learned to just be herself, no matter the numerous differences that those around her had. Accordingly, Hurston confers that “Among the thousand white persons, [she] [was] [a] dark rock surged upon, and overswept, but through it all, [she] remain[ed] [her]self.” Additionally, Hurston describes her time at the New World Cabaret with a white person. While listening to jazz music, she states that “ The great blobs of purple and red emotion have not touched him. He has only heard what I felt.” Hurston describes this as the only difference she ever felt between whites and blacks. She was subject to emotions due to racial oppression, which in turn showed her …show more content…
In a significant passage, she postulates: “BUT I AM NOT tragically colored. There is no great sorrow dammed up in my soul, nor lurking behind my eyes. I do not mind at all. 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 but about it.” She does not view the color of her skin as something that she should be humiliated or melancholy about. For she will not fixate on something that she can not change. Those in her community are bitter and blame their nature. She will not do so, instead, she will live life as herself. Additionally, Hurston contends that “Even in the helter skelter skirmish that is [her] life, [she] [has] seen that the world is to the strong regardless of a little pigmentation more of less... [she] [does] not weep at the world--[she] [is] too busy sharpening [her] oyster knife.” She has other matters to worry about in life than to be troubled over the color of her skin. For in life is arduous and every jab she receives, she will be ready to take it down with everything she has. This passage shows that like all humans Hurston is trying to find her identity and self worth. It is not until she is older that she is able to view her oppression as a sign not of weakness but as a symbol of strength. In this noteworthy passage, Hurston was able to curb all the injustice that was hurled her way and

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