Sylvia Plath (1932 – 1963) was a gifted writer of poetry whose life ended all too young by suicide. Attractive, smart, and ambitious, she seemed to have what it took to succeed. But it was during her years at Smith College, where she was well-liked and academically adept, that she attempted her first suicide. Journal entries in her diary later revealed how much Plath struggled from that time onward, up until her suicide.
Many of the truths behind her final years were exposed after her death, discovered in letters revealing the dark secrets of her tragic relationship with Ted Hughes. Her body of poetic work, much of it published posthumously, also reveals much about her state of mind during the brief journey of her adult life. Read More→
Zora Neale Hurston (1891 – 1960) was a memoirist, novelist, and folklorist who was an active member of the Harlem Renaissance literary movement. She was the first black student to study at Barnard college, and later in her career received a Guggenheim Fellowship. Her most influential works include Their Eyes Were Watching God, Tell My Horse, Mules and Men, and Moses, Man of the Mountain.
Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937) is Hurston’s best known work. Always somewhat controversial, discussions and perceptions of the novel have evolved over the decades since it was first published. The story follows Janie Crawford as she matures from a voiceless teenager to a woman with greater control over her own destiny.
The book was largely forgotten by the time of Hurston’s death in 1960, but re-emerged as a classic of twentieth-century literature and a staple in women’s studies courses. Here’s a sampling of quotes from Their Eyes Were Watching God: Read More→