How It Feels to Be Colored Me Questions and Answers
by Zora Neale Hurston

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What is the author's purpose for writing "How It Feels to Be Colored Me”?

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In her famous short essay "How To Feels to Be Colored Me," Zora Neale Hurston makes a powerful statement about identity, particularly African American identity, in the early decades of 20th century America. Through personal anecdotes and vivid imagery, Hurston illustrates that she confidently embraces who she is and feels that others should do the same.

Hurston's essay acknowledges the challenges she has faced ever since she "became colored" (paragraph 2). However, her attitude toward her race is very positive, so she does not dwell on oppression or racism. Instead, she celebrates herself. Hurston was a naturally outgoing girl who liked to sit on the porch and greet passersby. When she was young, Hurston admits that she didn't feel different from white people, only that she knew they did not live in her town (4). Hurston recognizes that once she moves out of the all-black town in which she grew up (Eatonville, also the town in which she sets her famous novel Their Eyes Were Watching God ), she...

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