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Their Eyes Were Watching God


Their Eyes Were Watching God Cover

ISBN13: 9780060931414
ISBN10: 0060931418
Condition: Student Owned
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Synopses & Reviews

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Publisher Comments:

Fair and long-legged, independent and articulate, Janie Crawford sets out to be her own person — no mean feat for a black woman in the '30s. Janie's quest for identity takes her through three marriages and into a journey back to her roots.


"Their Eyes belongs in the same category with that of William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Ernest Hemingway of enduring American literature." Saturday Review


"There is no book more important than this one." Alice Walker

About the Author

In her award-winning autobiography, Dust Tracks on a Road (1942), Zora Neale Hurston claimed to have been born in Eatonville, Florida, in 1901. She was, in fact, born in Notasulga, Alabama, on January 7, 1891, the fifth child of John Hurston (farmer, carpenter, and Baptist preacher) and Lucy Ann Potts (school teacher). The author of numerous books, including Their Eyes Were Watching God, Jonah's Gourd Vine, Mule sand Men, and Moses, Man of the Mountain, Hurston had achieved fame and sparked controversy as a novelist, anthropologist, outspoken essayist, lecturer, and theatrical producer during her sixty-nine years. Hurston's finest work of fiction appeared at a time when artistic and political statements — whether single sentences or book-length fictions — were peculiarly conflated. Many works of fiction were informed by purely political motives; political pronouncements frequently appeared in polished literary prose. Hurston's own political statements, relating to racial issues or addressing national politics, did not ingratiate her with her black male contemporaries. The end result was that Their Eyes Were Watching God went out of print not long after its first appearance and remained out of print for nearly thirty years.

Henry Louis Gates, Jr., has been one among many to ask: "How could the recipient of two Guggenheims and the author of four novels, a dozen short stories, two musicals, two books on black mythology, dozens of essays, and a prize winning autobiography virtually 'disappear' from her readership for three full decades?"

That question remains unanswered. The fact remains that every one of Hurston's books went quickly out of print; and it was only through the determined efforts, in the 1970s, of Alice Walker, Robert Hemenway (Hurston's biographer), Toni Cade Bambara, and other writers and scholars that all of her books are now back in print and that she has taken her rightful place in the pantheon of American authors.

In 1973, Walker, distressed that Hurston's writings had been all but forgotten, found Hurston's grave in the Garden of Heavenly Rest and installed a gravemarker. "After loving and teaching her work for a number of years," Walker later reported, "I could not bear that she did not have a known grave." The gravemarker now bears the words that Walker had inscribed there:





In Brief

Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960) was a novelist, folklorist, and anthropologist whose fictional and factual accounts of black heritage are unparalleled. She Is the author of many books, including Their Eyes Were Watching God, Dust Tracks on a Road, Tell My Horse, and Mules and Men.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

britt_luvs_cheveys, November 5, 2007 (view all comments by britt_luvs_cheveys)
I agree on the fact that the book itself is very inspiring. The book is about a woman stuggling for love and independance.
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(20 of 32 readers found this comment helpful)
Lucy Little, August 22, 2007 (view all comments by Lucy Little)
This well-written gem is an American classic. Hurston's tale of an African-American woman in the South is both educational and inspiring. I first read this as a college student in a women's lit class, but didn't fully appreciate it until I reread it as an adult (I guess I was supposed to be an adult in college.). She brings to life the era and the struggles faced. This book has stood the test of time; it has a permanent spot on my bookshelf.
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(12 of 22 readers found this comment helpful)
icarus_wings, January 21, 2007 (view all comments by icarus_wings)
Zora Neale Hurston brings an entirely new perspective to the canon of African-American and women's literature. As a tale of love, a search for identity, and a struggle for individualism, Their Eyes Were Watching God is a true masterpiece.
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Product Details

A Novel
Hurston, Zora Neals
Washington, Mary Helen
Hurston, Zora Neale
Gates, Henry Louis, Jr.
Gates, Henry Louis, Jr. JR.
Gates, Henry Louis, Jr.
Harper Perennial Modern Classics
Prince Frederick, MD
American fiction (fictional works by one author)
Afro-American women
Psychological fiction
Epic literature
African Americans
Self-realization -- Fiction.
African-American women
Edition Description:
1st Perennial Classics ed.
Perennial Classics
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
8.14x5.26x.59 in. .47 lbs.

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Their Eyes Were Watching God Used Trade Paper
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Product details 240 pages HarperCollins Publishers - English 9780060931414 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Their Eyes belongs in the same category with that of William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Ernest Hemingway of enduring American literature."
"Review" by , "There is no book more important than this one."
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