What is the tone of "How it Feels to Be Colored Me" with supporting textual evidence?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The overall tone that Hurston develops in "How It Feels to Be Colored Me" is lively, triumphant, and self-assured.  Throughout the essay, Hurston discusses the development of her identity, largely as a person of color, and although she expresses times when she feels hardship, she comes out strong.  For example, Hurston says that she thinks discrimination is ridiculous because it robs other people of the opportunity of her company:

Sometimes, I feel discriminated against, but it does not make me angry. It merely astonishes me. How can any deny themselves the pleasure of my company? It's beyond me.

Hurston uses the rhetorical question and a note of sarcasm to criticize others for discrimination.  She knows that she is a remarkable individual, and she will not allow herself to be made to feel in any way inferior.  So, throughout the essay, Hurston's use of figurative language and rhetorical techniques pose her as a strong person thereby developing a lively, triumphant, and self-assured tone.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial