English 100

Junior Seminar: Zora Neale Hurston


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
2 Fall 2005 Kramer, Eliza
MW 3-4:30 305 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Hughes, L. and Hurston, Z. N.: Mule Bone; Hurston, Z. N.: Folklore, Memoirs and Other Writings, Novels and Stories



Recommended Texts: Boyd, V.: Wrapped in Rainbows: The Life of Zora Neale Hurston; Davis, A.: Blues Legacies and Black Feminism; Hemenway, R. E.: Zora Neale Hurston: A Literary Biography; Kaplan, C. ed.: Zora Neale Hurston: A Life in Letters "

Description

"The two-volume Library of America edition of Hurston's major works will provide the foundation for our exploration of one of the twentieth century's most brilliant, elusive and contradictory writers. Our goal will be to understand how Hurston used her talent and her training (""the spy-glass of Anthropology"") to give artistic form to the genius of African American culture. Drawing on recent criticism that takes seriously Hurston's initiation into voodoo practice, and theory that compares her purpose to that of blues singer Bessie Smith, we will consider the literary as well as the extra-literary dimensions of this project. We will begin with Hurston's earliest published stories and Mule Bone, the play she wrote with Langston Hughes in an effort both to capture the drama of the black vernacular and to transform American theater. These readings will prepare us for a sustained examination of Hurston's four novels, two collections of folklore, and her famously slippery autobiography.



Requirements: weekly written responses to the reading, a 10-15 minute presentation to be written up as a 4-5 page paper, and a 10-12 page seminar paper. "


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