How It Feels to Be Colored Me Background

How It Feels to Be Colored Me Background

How It Feels To Be Colored Me is an essay written by Zora Neale Hurston in 1928. It was written to show what life was like for the average black woman in the 1920s. It wasn’t just aimed toward black readers, but to white readers too, to give a personal experience of what it felt like to be black and treated differently.

Hurston was well off and lived comfortably because her father had high titles and a steady job. She lived in an all-black community so although she did well financially, socially and emotionally she was treated different in white society. At about 13 years old, Hurston was forced to live with her relatives in a white community after her mother died. She was faced with a completely different attitude from the people there. Because of that cultural shock she experienced as a child, the idea her essay, How It Feels To Be Colored Me was born.

The essay expresses it’s viewpoints and ideas through “anecdotes, imagery, tone, and figurative speech”. As an anthropologist herself, the essay holds components of social norms/expectations, analysis of what life waIt concludes with the idea that we’re all one family, one race, and color has no meaning in the eyes of God.

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