Habitual Meekness In Zora Neale Hurston's Sweat

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Q. Has Delia’s “habitual meekness” been used against her? Does Delia need to use violence to gain her freedom at the end? How does Delia change in the course of the story? Ans. Zora Neale Hurston's "Sweat" depicts the changes in a dynamic protagonist, Delia Jones. In “Sweat,” the character Delia is the focus as she journeys from timid and abused to a woman with backbone. Delia Jones, a humble, straightforward and painstaking washerwoman, who is oppressed by her own spouse, Sykes. Despite her hard work, Delia is not respected by her abusive, mean husband Sykes. The story begins at, habitually meek, Delia’s turning point, where she sets her mind to no longer endure Sykes’s abuse. Meanwhile, Sykes has plans of his own. He wants to break Delia down so that he can get rid from her to leave the house…show more content…
In the entire story Delia’s habitual meekness is used against her. As Delia was a very pretty girl when she got married with Sykes. But during the course of time Delia turns into a thin and black woman because of her hard work to earn the livelihood and also the ceaseless cruelty of Sykes plays an important role to turn an attractive woman to a skinny woman. Sykes openly cheats to Delia for his plump mistress Bertha. The whole thing takes place just for Delia’s submissiveness. If Delia has been audacious from earlier the whole situation would not take place. At the end Delia needs to use violence to get rid from her cruel husband. Delia, who really cares for her beloved husband, finally lets the snake free in the house for Sykes and when Sykes lastly screams when the snake assails him, Delia does not pay any attention of his screaming. One of Hurston's central preoccupations in "Sweat" is the problem of oppression within the black community. Moreover, the author is certainly playing with the idea of a reversal of sexual power into the hands of a thin woman who toils ceaselessly for white

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