Talk:Zora Neale Hurston

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Discussion[edit]

Langston Hughes was surely a more prominent member of the Harlem Renaissance than Wright (and he was, of course, quite political, writing for a communist magazine in favor of a Stalin show trial, although he never joined the CPUSA officially). Wright was a bit later and more emergent when Hurston wrote. Further, Hughes was friends with Hurston, although occasionally. Hurston's work was well received in her own day, and she made quite a living, intermittently, as an author for magazines. Her Harlem contemporaries regarded her as lavish, apparently, and shied away from her as being erratic. Further, she did other work than writing. The article should be broadened to include these facts. I believe a biography of Hurston has appeared in 2003 that is a bit more inclusive, if anyone has read it and can bulk up the article.

Article needs expansion[edit]

There's more to be said about Hurston's work and the distinction between her contributions to fiction and to folklore/anthropology. I hope someone will expand this, I may add some things. Bruxism 21:47, 22 Jun 2005 (UTC)

mural in flagstaff az[edit]

Where is this mural in flagstaff? It sure looks like a Barnes and Noble cafe to me.

That IS the mural inside the B&N cafe. It's the same one in all of thier cafe's. 66.167.110.12 00:09, 8 January 2007 (UTC) LeeAnn92

Deleted repeat passage[edit]

The following paragraph appeared twice in the article:

Hurston's detachment from the wider civil rights movement struggle was demonstrated by her opposition to the Supreme Court ruling in the Brown v Board of Education case (1954). She voiced this opposition in the letter, Court Order Can’t Make the Races Mix, which was published in the Orlando Sentinel in August 1955. This letter caused a furor and proved to be Hurston's last public intervention.

I deleted the second instance in the "Politics" section, but I know that this leaves this section to be expanded. I don't know enough about Hurston's biography to make this happen, but I hope someone who does else can.--Pinko1977 01:12, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

Birthplace[edit]

About her birthplace! According to sparknotes.com she was born in Alabama and later as a toddler moved to Florida. Someone should do some research on this and clarify the text. I don't have the time at the moment unfortunately. Thanks!

According to page 13 of Zora Neale Hurston: A Literary Biography by Robert E. Hemenway, "Hurston had been born in Eatonville on January 7, probably in 1901; birth records of the period do not survive, and she was purposefully inconsistent in the birth dates she dispensed during her lifetime, most of which were fictitious." (Amazon online reader)
The "Chronology" section of my copy of Their Eyes Were Watching God says "January 7, 1891: Born in Eatonville, Florida, the fifth of eight children, to John Hurston, a carpenter and Baptist preacher, and Lucy Potts Hurston, a former schoolteacher."
Though the years are different, the sources agree that she was born in Eatonville. But, as pointed out by an editor, filmmaker Kristy Andersen has found evidence that Hurston's birthplace was Notasulga, Alabama; it would be nice to have a scholarly reference for this. - mako 07:51, 8 July 2006 (UTC)
I looked through some books at the library, and the recent ones all agree on Notasulga as her birthplace. One book cited John Lowe's Jump at the Sun (1997) as the source for this information, but I didn't have time to track it further. Lowe credits Cheryl Wall with discovering that Hurston was born in 1891. - mako 06:48, 13 July 2006 (UTC)
I looked at the 1900 US Census record, which gives Alabama, Jan 1891 for her birth, though no info on whether the 7th of 15th of that month, both dates being found in various sources. KingkongUK 12:01, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
Her birthdate as noted in the Hurston family bible is January 15, 1891. I'm changing the entry accordingly. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.240.229.175 (talk) 06:07, 7 June 2008 (UTC)

Links[edit]

This article is full of external links hidden as internal ones. Someone (I don't know how) needs to change this. Thanks Denis Diderot II 00:34, 25 September 2007 (UTC) Ive been told stories that Her family came from the Hairston Plantations,, www.hairston.org, being the largest plantation owners of the South and educating their slaves was normal they wanted their workers to be able to not be out smarted,, Hairstons in Black and White is a book by Henry Weinck —Preceding unsigned comment added by 75.48.251.254 (talk) 05:06, 13 December 2009 (UTC)

This is not true. There were Hurstons in that area and that's where the family came from. They had only a very small farm with but a few slaves. They were not particularly wealthy. —Preceding unsigned comment added by KristyAndersen (talkcontribs) 14:35, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

questioning 2 claims in politics section[edit]

The section on Hurston's politics is interesting, but I'm not sure about a couple of things. First, we say Hurston was "opposed to integration". Second, we say, "she worried about the demise of black schools and black teachers as a way to pass on cultural tradition to future generations of African-Americans." The only source in the paragraph is this letter, which is the explicit source for the second claim and perhaps the implicit source for the first. The letter does establish that she opposed Brown v. Board of Education and the mainstream integrationist movement, but it does not, to my eye, oppose integration itself; in fact, it calls for "ethical and cultural desegregation." And I don't see anything about black teachers as a way to pass on cultural tradition, though it does seem plausible that she would have worried about losing that. Are there other sources for these claims? --Allen 02:56, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

I'd say that the implication of the letter are clear enough. She states vefore the line about ethical and cultural degregation "Thems my sentiments and I am sticking by them. Growth from within." hence referring back the ideal that segregating schools would in turn disrupt black culture. I think that the line regarding Booker T. Washington ought to be removed, however, there is absolutely no evidence to support that whatsoever. --Farazy 03:53, 19 December 2007 (UTC)
Two things, First, you should change the link. Epstein's article is absurd. This is the link to her original article. http://www.teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=643. Secondly, I agree with Allen. To state that she is against integration based on what she says in this letter is a far reaching assumption. Its a problem of semantics mostly, but an important problem. It should be stated maybe that she is against govenment enforced integration. In that way, the issue deals more with what how she viewed the government's role. That is what I think is important about the letter. To say that she is against integration is another beast all together, and I don't think she was against integration, but rather she searched for a more grass roots way of approaching integration. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Udisalexander (talkcontribs) 08:28, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

her friends[edit]

I believe that her friends should also be called when she is being talked about because i believe her friend who one of the things that kept her going. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 64.160.68.35 (talk) 16:51, 29 May 2008 (UTC)


birth date[edit]

I made this change once but it was reverted. I updated Zora's birth date from Jan 7th to 15th. This information can be found the African American Review journal article by Pam Bordelon, "New tracks on 'Dust Tracks': toward a reassessment of the life of Zora Neale Hurston", in the Spring 1997 issue. The author of the article interviewed Zora's niece, who is in possession of the Hurston family bible containing a "family records" page listing biographical details of the family. This family bible is the most accurate source of information we have. Her actual birth date is listed in the "family records" page as Jan 15, 1891. I'm over it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 76.240.229.175 (talk) 20:32, 7 June 2008 (UTC)

The problem is that January 15 appears to be wrong. Lucy Anne Hurston's book Speak, So You Can Speak Again (2004) says January 7. So does Valerie Boyd's biography Wrapped in Rainbows (2003). Speak isn't available for preview, but here are excerpts from Wrapped in Rainbows that show January 7 as Hurston's birthday.
In her footnotes, Boyd writes that January 7 comes from the 1900 census. She also cites Hurston's brother as the source of January 7. Boyd writes that the family bible gives January 15 as the birthdate, "however, Hurston consistently gave January 7 as the date of her birth — no matter how many variations she gave of the year". She notes that all the entries in the family bible were written in the same handwriting, and she suspects they were written by a single person retrospectively, as opposed to recording family events as they happened.
Considering that Hurston's niece, brother, and biographer — and Hurston herself — all say January 7, I think that's what we should go with. — Malik Shabazz (talk · contribs) 02:06, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

Silly sentence[edit]

Hurston was "purposefully inconsistent in the birth dates she dispensed during her lifetime, most of which were fictitious."

Isn't the second part of this sentence a bit silly? How can one possibly have more than one non-fictitious birthplace? I'm sure the quote is accurate, but still...Juanmejgom (talk) 21:08, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

"Birth dates" isn't the same as "birthplaces." --Lumin (talk) 03:24, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

External Links[edit]

Though I understand the value of creating links to websites of varying political opinion, I do not like the external links that bring me to these articles by Marcus Epstein. I agree with Epstein on many points. I think that Hurston was a conservative and that she help views that subverted the black vangaurd and the liberals and so on, but I find his articles to be trite, fascist propaganda. I am open opinions of all kind, but not when they're filled with such drivel. I think that we should take these articles off of the external links and find better substitutions that exhibit the ways in which Zora Neale Hurston spoke politically of segregation and Brown vs. Board of education. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Udisalexander (talkcontribs) 06:45, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Which links bring you to articles by Epstein? I've clicked on all of them and I can't find anything by anybody named Epstein. — Malik Shabazz (talk · contribs) 07:04, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Its not on this page. Its on the Zora Neale Hurston Wikiquote page. Udisalexander (talk) 08:20, 9 December 2008 (UTC)Alex Udis 8 December


Lots of Expansions[edit]

I've just added (and cited) a ton of information in the bio and career sections. In the process, I added a chronology to the Career section, rearranged and merged some information, and deleted several inaccurate claims and needlessly elaborate passages. The article still needs a lot of work -- much more can fruitfully be said about Hurston's literary and anthropological career -- but I think this is progress. If I've mistakenly deleted anyone's pet sentence, please don't revert the whole thing -- we can surely reach a compromise. :) Oh, also, I added some citation-needed tags for info that seems to me to be dubious. --Lumin (talk) 03:21, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

Libertarian?[edit]

I find the (at least 2) claims on this page that Hurston was a Libertarian (and furthermore that the libertarian politics of her works hindered her literary acceptance) problematic. I appreciate that some connections can be made between her politics and the views of the modern libertarian movement, but to say that she was libertarian seems unsubstantiated. Do we have any sources in which she self-identifies as libertarian? Do we have any sources at all linking her with that movement? Without sources, the article is simply providing personal observances about her politics, and thus constitutes original research. Moreover, this smacks of anachronistically applying current ideologies, beliefs and ideas to a past in which such ideas are untenable (even if rough analogues for them can be found). This is akin to (though milder than) those who looking at Jesus's proverbs find evidence that he was a socialist. Granted, in the time when Hurston was writing the foundations of the modern libertarian movement were being layed, but most of the important events in bringing about the distillation of that movement into a roughly single, coherent movement occurred after her death. It seems more reasonable to label her, as the article also (and possible contradictorily) does, as "sympathetic to the Old Right," which relieves the article of both its OR problem and its possible anachronism. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 24.98.255.233 (talk) 21:45, 11 August 2009 (UTC)

"nth of eight children"[edit]

There seems to be some dispute about how many older siblings she had; an IP changed "fifth of eight children" to "seventh of eight children". This may just have been mischief, but in any case I couldn't find a reference for this in the sources. Does anyone know where such a reference is? Artie P.S. (talk) 08:14, 10 December 2009 (UTC) Dr. Lois Gaston, a spokesperson for the estate, claims the census shows a deceased 9th sibling, who died in his teens. —Preceding unsigned comment added by KristyAndersen (talkcontribs) 14:41, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Bio completely replaced[edit]

User:Lala 2010 just replaced the entire Biography section with a rewrite. That's fine in principle, but the new version is unsourced. (I also feel it has problems of tone and POV, but that's more subjective.) Unless the new version is given sources in fairly short order, I propose to revert to the old one, which seemed perfectly servicable (and cited sources). Artie P.S. (talk) 12:54, 10 December 2009 (UTC)

It seems the whole article is going to be replaced. I'll leave this to the page's contributors. Artie P.S. (talk) 12:59, 10 December 2009 (UTC)

Friends of the Viva Florida 500 WP is looking for Florida Black Heritage page[edit]

We listed your page in our Todo section at the landing page for the Friends of Wikipedia:Viva_Florida_500_WP Our aim is to assist in getting cites, references and embellish Wikipedia Florida History articles with new factual information by using our state's 500th anniversary to meet and greet new wikipedia editors. I've not found one central Florida Black Heritage page, do you know of one or would somebody like to come up with one?--Ourhistory153 (talk) 16:59, 8 October 2011 (UTC)

Source for Cape Canaveral?[edit]

"She worked in a library in Cape Canaveral, Florida," anybody have a source for this? It is very interesting and I can research and find more on it --Ourhistory153 (talk) 16:30, 3 January 2012 (UTC)

Featured article?[edit]

Is there any chance this article could be made into an FA? I came across Hurston by chance through unrelated books on Amazon & she's a blast - not to mention the article. It begs the question why I have heard of Margaret Meade but not Zora Hurston Manytexts (talk) 04:05, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

That is a very worthy goal. This article should be made an FA.User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 20:03, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Clarification Needed on "Niggerati" term[edit]

This article states that Hurston and others called themselves the "niggerati" without giving further explanation. The Wikipedia page for Wallace Thurman (who coined the term, i.e. see Langston Hughes' The Big Sea p. 238, where Hughes writes, "With [Thurman's] bitter sense of humor, he called the Harlem literati, the 'niggerati'.") gives a better description:

"Thurman and others of the "Niggerati" (the deliberately ironic name he used for the young African American artists and intellectuals of the Harlem Renaissance) wanted to show the real lives of African Americans, both the good and the bad."

Could we add this parenthetical description to Hurston's page as well? I'm not sure how to do it.

Thanks for your time.

Biography out of order[edit]

This article reads very strangely. It covers her life and death, seeming to skip over a ton of information, and then goes back in time to go over her literary career. Can these be integrated into a more continuous timeline? Dreamingiris (talk) 18:22, 6 February 2014 (UTC)

It is quite standard with WP biogs to divide it into personal life and work. That is how this article is structured. Span (talk) 23:15, 7 February 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. I have noticed it in other articles, but it seems to work best when the personal life section is short and the work section is the main focus of the article. In this article, both are about the same length and it gives the effect of having two separate biographies. In reading the article I had to keep skipping back and forth to make sense of the biography and piece back together her life. While this format may be effective in other articles, it makes this article read strangely. Dreamingiris (talk) 15:54, 10 February 2014 (UTC)
You are right that it needs work and could integrate things better. It's on my list. The article is mostly unref'd and so needs that too. It's on my list. Have a go! Span (talk) 16:02, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

New source: Walker's 2003 lecture[edit]

In 2003, Alice Walker gave the Virginia Gildersleeve lecture at Barnard College and discussed Hurston's legacy. The recordings had been online and then seemed to be down; I asked Barnard if they could find them again, and they put the videos back up. Walker's talk is about an hour long and is probably a good source for people who want to add detail to that part of the Zora Neale Hurston article. Sumana Harihareswara 20:12, 7 July 2014 (UTC)

Criticism[edit]

This article does not include any criticism of Hurston. I think the allegations of plagiarism and fabrication should go in.Pokey5945 (talk) 20:37, 25 July 2014 (UTC)

Zora and Alan Lomax[edit]

John Szwed provides numerous examples in his book ,<Ref> 'The Man Who Recorded The World'<Ref> on the relationship between Zora Neale Hurston and Alan Lomax beginning in 1935 with some feild work in Fla. to Haiti in '37 . This is important for obvious reasons as she exerted ground breaking influence over Alan that changed his whole approach to collecting information and how he then tried to communicate his ideas in the 'plain-speak' that he found Zora exaulting at . I find this exchange had far reaching implications for the ambitions of Alan , especially when he arrived at the Library of Congress and essentially begins the true attempt by the white race to understand what black folks thought . This should be noted in any serious bio of Zora , including their sexual dalliances .      With Respect , Mike Brown 7/16/15 — Preceding unsigned comment added by 207.53.198.142 (talk) 16:47, 16 July 2015 (UTC) 

Summary (New Article)[edit]

On Zora Neale Hurston wiki page I will create an article for her famous story 'How it Feels to be Colored Me" because there is no wiki link for that under the section selected bibliography. The section on adulthood for Zora was rather short I was going to look around for more information that may be relevant for others to know. Also, under the section biography I want to see if I can include some information about Zora after 1952 of any of her work or of any work any one else has recovered of her legacy after she died. I will also re-organize the information in her article to make it more logical. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Kcoke2 (talkcontribs) 05:02, 3 November 2015 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Filmography[edit]

I am an author and filmmaker, and I studied the films of Zora Neale Hurston as part of my graduate work at New York University. I will be adding to her filmography. — Preceding unsigned comment added by LilithAuthor (talkcontribs) 19:24, 25 February 2017 (UTC)

Hello, LilithAuthor, and welcome to Wikipedia. I don't know much about Hurston's film-work, except that some of her footage was included in last year's Pioneers of African-American Cinema (which I keep meaning to buy myself—maybe this will be the kick in the pants I needed). Your contributions to this article, or any other, are certainly welcome. — Malik Shabazz Talk/Stalk 06:47, 26 February 2017 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 4 May 2017[edit]

Please change the heading "criticism and accusations of plagiarism" to "criticism."

(it's poor and incomplete scholarship--misleading and perhaps a tad racist) JillColvinJones (talk) 12:43, 4 May 2017 (UTC)

Done DRAGON BOOSTER 14:46, 4 May 2017 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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