Monday, January 23, 2012

ReView of THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD by Zora Neale Hurston


I chose to read this book for my 2012 Global Reading Challenge, the North American section, for reasons being that I have never really delved into African American literature, aside for a few ethnographies in my Anthropology classes in college, and also because I remember coming across it and finding it highly recommended and praised.

Well, to my shock and surprise this book is mainly written in 'phonetic spellings of the dialect spoken by blacks of African and Carribean descent in the South of the early 20th century.'  Thanks to wikipedia I actually, now, know what that dialect is :).  So to put it lightly, I barely got through the book trying to decipher and vocalize the dialect in order to understand what I am actually reading.  For this reason, alone, I have been trying to read this book for quite a few months now; it's pretty sad, actually.  Well thanks to the Global Challenge I have finally pushed myself to finish it.

 I don't have much to say about this novel.  I don't much understand it either, unfortunately.  I can say, though, that it does carry quite a bit of universality once you get past the dialect and immerse yourself in the story.  These parts of universal wisdom or experience were my favorite from the book.  The second strongest point of the book is a woman's fierce independence and finding ways to make a life for herself out of her own will, volition, and ambition for life.

I think I need to come back to this book later in time... I feel I am fairly ignorant of African American culture, and I will most likely be reading more of it.  So I will be reading 'Invisible Man' by Ralph Ellison, also for North America to delve a little deeper into African American literature.  Then, afterwards, I think I will give this book another shot.


VISIT MY ORIGINAL CHALLENGE ENTRY HERE


 


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