Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College African American Literature PAper

Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College

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I need help with a Literature question. All explanations and answers will be used to help me learn.

Hello I need help to answer these questions African American Literature. please find attached the Questions and the book you must only use to answers these questions no outside resources . please answer each questions separately.

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Carefully read and follow the directions as you move through each section of the exam. Only use class notes and course readings - no internet search results - in developing your answer to each question. Carefully read through your responses before submitting them to make sure they are grammatically and punctually sound, and you have answered as fully as you can. Q 2 Black Subjectivity Debate Q 3 Trickster Figure Q 4 Colorism Q 5 Social Construct Q 6 African Diaspora Q 7 How is the appearance of language in Charles Chesnutt’s writing related to the Regionalist literary tradition? Q 8 List all of the US historical time periods that are part of the Black Subjectivity Debate and the racial identity questions associated with each of them. Q 9 What is the significance of African American writers’ practice of detailing the moment they come to recognize their Blackness? Describe one specific example provided by a writer in giving your response. Q 10 How does Harriet Jacobs portray the particular impact slavery’s oppression has on Black women? Describe one example from Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl in providing your response. Q 11 What is the difference between where Black subjectivity is during W.E.B. Du Bois and Booker T. Washington’s ideological debate versus where Black subjectivity is during Jacobs and Douglass’ writing of their narratives? What does this difference say about the nature of race as a social construct? Bloom's Modern Critical Interpretations Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn All Quiet on the Western Front As You Like It The Ballad of the Sad Café Beloved Beowulf Billy Budd, Benito Cereno, Bartleby the Scrivener, and Other Tales Black Boy The Bluest Eye Cat on a Hot Tin Roof The Catcher in the Rye Catch-22 The Color Purple Crime and Punishment The Crucible Darkness at Noon Death of a Salesman The Death of Artemio Cruz The Divine Comedy Don Quixote Dubliners Emerson’s Essays Emma Fahrenheit 451 Frankenstein The Grapes of Wrath Great Expectations The Great Gatsby Hamlet The Handmaid’s Tale Heart of Darkness I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings The Iliad Jane Eyre The Joy Luck Club The Jungle Long Day’s Journey Into Night Lord of the Flies The Lord of the Rings Love in the Time of Cholera Macbeth The Man Without Qualities The Metamorphosis Miss Lonelyhearts Moby-Dick Night 1984 The Odyssey Oedipus Rex The Old Man and the Sea On the Road One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest One Hundred Years of Solitude The Pardoner’s Tale Persuasion Portnoy’s Complaint A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Pride and Prejudice Ragtime The Red Badge of Courage The Rime of the Ancient Mariner The Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám The Scarlet Letter A Separate Peace Silas Marner Song of Solomon The Stranger A Streetcar Named Desire Sula The Sun Also Rises The Tale of Genji A Tale of Two Cities The Tempest Their Eyes Were Watching God Things Fall Apart To Kill a Mockingbird Ulysses Waiting for Godot The Waste Land White Noise Wuthering Heights Young Goodman Brown Bloom’s Modern Critical Interpretations Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God New Edition Edited and with an introduction by Harold Bloom Sterling Professor of the Humanities Yale University Bloom’s Modern Critical Interpretations: Their Eyes Were Watching God—New Edition Copyright © 2008 Infobase Publishing Introduction © 2008 by Harold Bloom All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval systems, without permission in writing from the publisher. For more information contact: Bloom’s Literary Criticism An imprint of Infobase Publishing 132 West 31st Street New York NY 10001 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Hurston, Zora Neale. Zora Neale Hurston’s Their eyes were watching God / [edited with an introduction by] Harold Bloom.— New ed. p. cm. — (Bloom’s modern critical interpretations) Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN-13: 978-0-7910-9788-5 1. Hurston, Zora Neale. Their eyes were watching God. 2. African American women in literature. I. Title: Their eyes were watching God. II. Bloom, Harold. III. Title. PS3515.U789T639 2008 813’.52—dc22 2007035378 Bloom’s Literary Criticism books are available at special discounts when purchased in bulk quantities for businesses, associations, institutions, or sales promotions. Please call our Special Sales Department in New York at (212) 967-8800 or (800) 322-8755. You can find Bloom’s Literary Criticism on the World Wide Web at http://www.chelseahouse.com Contributing Editor: Amy Sickels Cover designed by Takeshi Takahashi Cover photo Kuzmin Pavel/Shutterstock.com Printed in the United States of America Bang EJB 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 This book is printed on acid-free paper. All links and Web addresses were checked and verified to be correct at the time of publication. Because of the dynamic nature of the Web, some addresses and links may have changed since publication and may no longer be valid. Contents Editor’s Note vii Introduction 1 Harold Bloom Literacy and Hibernation Robert B. Stepto 5 “I Love the Way Janie Crawford Left Her Husbands”: 9 Zora Neale Hurston’s Emergent Female Hero Mary Helen Washington The Politics of Fiction, Anthropology, and the Folk: Zora Neale Hurston Hazel V. Carby Language, Speech, and Difference in Their Eyes Were Watching God Cynthia Bond 23 41 Naming and Power in Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God Sigrid King Laughin’ Up a World: Their Eyes Were Watching God and the (Wo)Man of Words John Lowe “Mink Skin or Coon Hide”: The Janus-faced Narrative of Their Eyes Were Watching God Susan Edwards Meisenhelder 57 71 117 vi Contents “The porch couldn’t talk for looking”: Voice and Vision in Their Eyes Were Watching God Deborah Clarke “The Hierarchy Itself ”: Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God and the Sacrifice of Narrative Authority Ryan Simmons 167 “Some Other Way to Try”: From Defiance to Creative Submission in Their Eyes Were Watching God Shawn E. Miller Chronology 205 Contributors 209 Bibliography 211 Acknowledgments Index 217 215 147 185 Editor’s Note My Introduction stresses the affinities of Zora Neale Hurston with the heroic vitalism of Theodore Dreiser and D. H. Lawrence. The distinguished scholar Robert B. Stepto connects Their Eyes Were Watching God to Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man by the themes of “ascent and immersion.” A more political reading is ventured by Hazel V. Carby, and in linguistic terms by three essayists: Cynthia Bond, Sigrid King, and John Lowe. Problems of narrative doubling and of the wavering border of the visual and language are the concerns of Susan Edwards Meisenhelder and Deborah Clarke. Hurston’s evasion of narrative directness is studied by Ryan Simmons, after which Shawn E. Miller concludes this volume by analyzing Janie’s transition from her bad first marriage to tragic fulfillment in her second. vii HAROLD BLOOM Introduction I Extra-literary factors have entered into the process of even secular canonization from Hellenistic Alexandria into the High Modernist Era of Eliot and Pound, so that it need not much dismay us if contemporary work by women and by minority writers becomes esteemed on grounds other than aesthetic. When the High Modernist critic Hugh Kenner assures us of the permanent eminence of the novelist and polemicist Wyndham Lewis, we can be persuaded, unless of course we actually read books like Tarr and Hitler. Reading Lewis is a rather painful experience, and makes me skeptical of Kenner’s canonical assertions. In the matter of Zora Neale Hurston, I have had a contrary experience, starting with skepticism when I first encountered essays by her admirers, let alone by her idolators. Reading Their Eyes Were Watching God dispels all skepticism. Moses: Man of the Mountain is an impressive book in its mode and ambitions, but a mixed achievement, unable to resolve problems of diction and of rhetorical stance. Essentially, Hurston is the author of one superb and moving novel, unique not in its kind but in its isolated excellence among other stories of the kind. The wistful opening of Their Eyes Were Watching God pragmatically affirms greater repression in women as opposed to men, by which I mean “repression” only in Freud’s sense: unconscious yet purposeful forgetting: Now, women forget all those things they don’t want to remember, and remember everything they don’t want to forget. The dream is the truth. Then they act and do things accordingly.   Harold Bloom Hurston’s Janie is now necessarily a paradigm for women, of whatever race, heroically attempting to assert their own individuality in contexts that continue to resent and fear any consciousness that is not male. In a larger perspective, should the contexts modify, the representation of Janie will take its significant place in a long tradition of such representations in American and English fiction. This tradition extends from Samuel Richardson to Doris Lessing and other contemporaries, but only rarely has been able to visualize authentically strong women who begin with all the deprivations that circumstance assigns to Janie. It is a crucial aspect of Hurston’s subtle sense of limits that the largest limitation is that imposed upon Janie by her grandmother, who loves her best, yet fears for her the most. As a former slave, the grandmother, Nanny, is haunted by the compensatory dream of making first her daughter, and then her granddaughter, something other than “the mule of the world,” customary fate of the black woman. The dream is both powerful enough, and sufficiently unitary, to have driven Janie’s mother away, and to condemn Janie herself to a double disaster of marriages, before the tragic happiness of her third match completes as much of her story as Hurston desires to give us. As readers, we carry away with us what Janie never loses, the vivid pathos of her grandmother’s superb and desperate displacement of hope: “And, Janie, maybe it wasn’t much, but Ah done de best Ah kin by you. Ah raked and scraped and bought dis lil piece uh land so you wouldn’t have to stay in de white folks’ yard and tuck yo’ head befo’ other chillum at school. Dat was all right when you was little. But when you got big enough to understand things, Ah wanted you to look upon yo’self. Ah don’t want yo’ feathers always crumpled by folks throwin’ up things in yo’ face. And Ah can’t die easy thinkin’ maybe de menfolks white or black is makin’ a spit cup outa you: Have some sympathy fuh me. Put me down easy, Janie, Ah’m a cracked plate.” II Hurston’s rhetorical strength, even in Their Eyes Were Watching God, is frequently too overt, and theatens an excess, when contrasted with the painful simplicity of her narrative line and the reductive tendency at work in all her characters except for Janie and Nanny. Yet the excess works, partly because Hurston is so considerable and knowing a mythologist. Hovering in Their Eyes Were Watching God is the Mosaic myth of deliverance, the pattern of revolution and exodus that Hurston reimagines as her prime trope of power: Introduction  But there are other concepts of Moses abroad in the world. Asia and all the Near East are sown with legends of this character. They are so numerous and so varied that some students have come to doubt if the Moses of the Christian concept is real. Then Africa has her mouth on Moses. All across the continent there are the legends of the greatness of Moses, but not because of his beard nor because he brought the laws down from Sinai. No, he is revered because he had the power to go up the mountain and to bring them down. Many men could climb mountains. Anyone could bring down laws that had been handed to them. But who can talk with God face to face? Who has the power to command God to go to a peak of a mountain and there demand of Him laws with which to govern a nation? What other man has ever commanded the wind and the hail? The light and darkness? That calls for power, and that is what Africa sees in Moses to worship. For he is worshipped as a god. Power in Hurston is always potentia, the demand for life, for more life. Despite the differences in temperament, Hurston has affinities both with Dreiser and with Lawrence, heroic vitalists. Her art, like theirs, exalts an exuberance that is beauty, a difficult beauty because it participates in reality-testing. What is strongest in Janie is a persistence akin to Dreiser’s Carrie and Lawrence’s Ursula and Gudrun, a drive to survive in one’s own fashion. Nietzsche’s vitalistic injunction, that we must try to live as though it were morning, is the implicit basis of Hurston’s true religion, which in its American formulation (Thoreau’s), reminds us that only that day dawns to which we are alive. Something of Lawrence’s incessant sense of the sun is paralleled by Hurston’s trope of solar trajectory, in a cosmos where: “They sat on the boarding house porch and saw the sun plunge into the same crack in the earth from which the night emerged” and where: “Every morning the world flung itself over and exposed the town to the sun.” Janie’s perpetual sense of the possibilities of another day propels her from Nanny’s vision of safety first to the catastrophe of Joe Starks and then to the love of Tea Cake, her true husband. But to live in a way that starts with the sun is to become pragmatically doom-eager, since mere life is deprecated in contrast to the possibility of glory, or life more abundant, rather than Nanny’s dream of a refuge from exploitation. Hurston’s most effective irony is that Janie’s drive toward her own erotic potential should transcend her grandmother’s categories, since the marriage with Tea Cake is also Janie’s pragmatic liberation from bondage toward men. When he tells her, in all  Harold Bloom truth, that she has the keys to the kingdom, he frees her from living in her grandmother’s way. A more pungent irony drove Hurston to end Janie’s idyll with Tea Cake’s illness and the ferocity of his subsequent madness. The impulse of her own vitalism compels Janie to kill him in self-defense, thus ending necessarily life and love in the name of the possibility of more life again. The novel’s conclusion is at once an elegy and a vision of achieved peace, an intense realization that indeed we are all asleep in the outer life: The day of the gun, and the bloody body, and the courthouse came and commenced to sing a sobbing sigh out of every corner in the room; out of each and every chair and thing. Commenced to sing, commenced to sob and sigh, singing and sobbing. Then Tea Cake came prancing around her where she was and the song of the sigh flew out of the window and lit in the top of the pine trees. Tea Cake, with the sun for a shawl. Of course he wasn’t dead. He could never be dead until she herself had finished feeling and thinking. The kiss of his memory made pictures of love and light against the wall. Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see. III Hurston herself was refreshingly free of all the ideologies that currently obscure the reception of her best book. Her sense of power has nothing in common with politics of any persuasion, with contemporary modes of feminism, or even with those questers who search for a black esthetic. As a vitalist, she was of the line of the Wife of Bath and Sir John Falstaff and Mynheer Peeperkorn. Like them, she was outrageous, heroically larger than life, witty in herself and the cause of wit in others. She belongs now to literary legend, which is as it should be. Her famous remark in response to Carl Van Vechten’s photographs is truly the epigraph to her life and work: “I love myself when I am laughing. And then again when I am looking mean and impressive.” Walt Whitman would have delighted in that as in her assertion: “When I set my hat at a certain angle and saunter down Seventh Avenue . . . the cosmic Zora emerges. . . . How can any deny themselves the pleasure of my company? It’s beyond me.” With Whitman, Hurston herself is now an image of American literary vitality, and a part also of the American mythology of exodus, of the power to choose the party of Eros, of more life. R obert B . S tepto Literacy and Hibernation I’m not blaming anyone for this state of affairs, mind you; nor merely crying mea culpa. The fact is that you carry part of your sickness within you, at least I do as an invisible man. I carried my sickness and though for a long time I tried to place it in the outside world, the attempt to write it down shows me that at least half of it lay within me. —Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man B Anochecí Enfermo. Amanecí bueno (I went to bed sick. I woke up well.) —Jay Wright, Dimensions of History y the time we travel beyond the major work of Richard Wright, AfroAmerican literature’s narrative tradition is still very much alive—even though the texts are rarely termed “narratives” by writer or reader, or consciously placed in an ongoing artistic continuum. However, after Wright it is also clear that the possibilities for significant revoicings of the ascent and immersion narratives (and their accompanying rhetorics) are virtually exhausted. This is not to say that ascent and immersion narratives do not appear in our recent literature; nor is it to say that Afro-American writers are no longer fascinated with creating rhetorics of racial soulfulness and soullessness. Indeed, in the last decade the abiding fascination with rhetorics of the former type has From From Behind the Veil: A Study of Afro-American Narrative, pp. 163–166. © 1979 by the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.   Robert B. Stepto become so pronounced that in some quarters it is seen to be an Artistic Movement, and even an Aesthetic. Be this as it may, the fact remains that, after Black Boy in particular, the situation is such that any actual forwarding of the “historical consciousness” of Afro-American narrative must involve some kind of escape from the lockstep imposed by the tradition’s dominant and prefiguring narrative patterns. In theory, the logical first stop beyond the narrative of ascent or immersion (a stop which need not be any more generic, in a conventional sense, than were the preceding stops) is one that somehow creates a fresh narrative strategy and arc out of a remarkable combination of ascent and immersion narrative properties. In theory, attempts to achieve such remarkable combinations are possible in Afro-American letters anytime after the appearance of The Souls of Black Folk in 1903. In practice, however, very few Afro-American narrativists appear to have comprehended the opportunity before them, let alone fashioned combinations of merit and of a certain energy. In The Autobiography of an Ex-Coloured Man, for example, James Weldon Johnson clearly demonstrates that he has some idea of the symbolic journeys and spaces which the new narrative will require, but his dedication to troping the Du Boisian nightmare of immersion aborted—which, in his hands, is fundamentally a commitment to expressing a new narrative content— precludes his achieving a new narrative arc. In writing Cane, Jean Toomer takes further than Johnson did the idea of binding new narrative content to new narrative form; but the success of his effort is questionable, since a new narrative arc never really emerges from his aggressive yet orchestrated display of forms and voices. The absen ...
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Questions on African American Literature
Institution Affiliation




Q1. Black Subjectivity Debate
The author, Toni Morrison, has tirelessly called in her disapproval for joining in, rational
and political involvement with her stand on and worries about blackness. Toni's ideas are being
used by other authors to show present African attitudes. They suggest that Africans vivid
themselves contrarily from African-Americans. Black subjectivity is, therefore, how the African
viewed themselves rather than what the other people thought of them.
Q2. Trickster Figure
Pheoby exhibits her degree of intellect when she goes to see Janie warn her about the
people's gossip. She does not walk directly to Janie's house as a trick so that people would not
start inquiring about why she was going to visit her. She even stops on the way to talk to nearly
everyone she comes across. Her behavior adopts what Hurston refers to trickster figure as she
ambiguity to complete her mission of warning Janie (Bloom, 2018).
Q3. Colorism
The discrimination of people based on the shade of their skin, which is mostly from
people of different social and cultural implications, is what is referred to as colorism. It is also a
reliance that one's skin shade is more superior than another. One of the most common cases that
we know is that of the belief that light-skinned people are superior to dark-skinned individuals.
Q4. Social Construct
Social construct is the concepts that are made as well as accepted by people in a given
community. It is also something that exists not in impartial actuality but is an outcome of people



interacting with each other. It is, therefore, right to say that social construct exists because
humans agree it is there.
Q5. African Diaspora
The idiom African diaspora is used to refer to the population of people from Africa
during slavery in Tran...

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