- Library Binding: 96 pages
- Publisher: Chelsea House Publishers; Library Binding edition (30 Aug. 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 079104520X
- ISBN-13: 978-0791045206
- Product Dimensions: 23.8 x 16 x 1.3 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,957,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Zora Neale Hurston's "Their Eyes Were Watching God" (Bloom's Reviews) Library Binding – 30 Aug 1996
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""Their Eyes" belongs in the same category -- with that of William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Ernest Hemingway -- of enduring American literature."-- "Saturday Review"" . . . thanks to this audiobook, Zora's characters speak to us - through the wonderful voice of Ruby Dee."-"The Heard Word"Dee is marvelous in all roles in this stage-worthy performance."-"AudioFile --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
* Zora Neale Hurston's masterpiece is perhaps the most widely read and highly regarded novel in the entire canon of African American literature. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
I know nothing of Zora Neale Hurston except that she wrote a great classic in Their Eyes Were Watching God sometime in the nineteen thirties.
The books makes its focal point around Janie Crawford, the envy of all other black sisters because of her light skin and her below the waist long hair. A strong and independent Afro-American woman, Janie knows what she wants out of life and leaves her town of Eatonville searching for it; finding herself at the altar on three occasions.
Forced more or less into the first marriage with Logan which did not last longer than a snowball in hell, Janie does her best to be a good wife, but at this stage she is still young and does not understand what is required of her in this unity which is on the verge of breaking down. As this happens, she quickly hooks up with the sweet talking Joe Starks, a man whom she looks up to and who will become the mayor of the small county where they live. Life with Joe Starks is different to the marriage with Logan as all the folks look up to Starks who is responsible, thoroughly arrogant, stubborn and forces his opinions and standards on Janie, like it or not.
But a reprieve comes in Janie Crawford's life after the death of the Mayor, which finds her grown into maturity and with a better comprehension of the world around her, and a better understanding of her desires and how she may acquire this love which has eluded her all these years. From her past experiences Janie reaches out for marriage the third time over with a man twelve years her junior, and this is when she will taste love at its sweetest for the first time, and be acquainted with pain, racial prejudice and great loss. For lovers of classical books, this book comes highly recommended!!!
The racism is shocking at times, yet it invites us into the 'porch culture' that is so commonly associated with Black America. The protagonist is Jane, the product of rape by a white school teacher. Her mother runs away, leaving her in the care of her grandmother, who tries to shield her from the strong racism (Janie doesn't even realise she is black until she is 6!) and, wanting the best for her, arranges a marriage when Janie is just 16. Janie struggles but eventually takes her to a man worthy of her love. It is a beautiful tale, full of sadness, yet these downtrodden characters show admirable determination to survive and make the best of life. It is well worth reading, and easy to see how this book provided inspiration for authors such as Toni Morrison!
Janie is 16 when we first meet her in the care of her grandmother, a slave who became pregnant to her owner just before abolition. Janie's own birth was as a result of the rape of her mother by a teacher. The date isn't given, but a quick calculation suggests that the bulk of the book takes place in the first couple of decades of the 20th century. This matters, because one of my major criticisms of the book is that it seems to be set quite apart from historical context. There is no mention of WW1, no suggestion that any of the men fought or, indeed, had an opinion on the rights or wrongs of fighting for the USA. My (shallow) understanding is that this was a time of great change for African Americans, when they began to demand that a country that expected them to fight and die for it should also give them rights as equal citizens, develop a true democracy that embraced all people equally. But Janie's world indicates none of this, and I found myself therefore not being able to entirely accept it as a realistic picture of the time.
Instead, Janie's contemporaries are shown as lazy, passive and unambitious on the whole, their aspirations beaten out of them by a world still run by and for the white elite. That I could accept more, though it seems in conflict with the idea of the development of the all-black town of Eatonville in which much of the story is placed.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The most beautifully written novel I have read. At first it could be tricky to get into the flow of this book, however persevere as the story is well thought out and the writing is... Read morePublished 1 month ago by A. Harvey
This book might be called ‘black literature’. Totally enclosed in the negro world of the 1930s, the musical poetry of the language expresses their lives perfectly. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Pauline Butcher Bird
Book was in acceptable condition and is a classic that everybody ought to read .Published 3 months ago by Eva Johansen
I want to buy this book, I really do. However, I cannot and will not spend £6.66 on a book. Come on Amazon, add another 1p to the RRP for Kindle so that I don't get forced into a... Read morePublished 3 months ago by C Librarian
This is a real gem of a book. It took me a while to get into the language as the speech is written phonetically. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Matchboxes
wonderful story of a young black girl and her journey into full blown womanhood.Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
An interesting portrait of a woman's developing consciousness, independence and sense of self. Most of the dialogue is written phonetically which takes a little getting used to but... Read morePublished 7 months ago by S Litton
Just started reading it, and finding it hard to put down. BrilliantPublished 9 months ago by Doreen Parker