Plight of Women in Sweat by Zora Neal Hurston Essay

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“Sweat” by Zora Neal Hurston is one simple yet powerful story that aims to reveal the plight of women through Delia. Delia turns out to be an empowered woman who has built her own home, handles her family’s finances, works hard, and takes pleasure in the results of her hard work. The fascinating fact about Delia whom I believe represents women in general, is that she was able to establish and maintain a home despite being married to an inconsiderate husband who only brought a longing for the flesh instead of love into the relationship (699).

In a nutshell, Delia’s husband, Sykes has plans to kill her to pave for way for his second marriage to a plump woman named Bertha. He intends to achieve this by placing a rattlesnake in their
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Hancock who made an observation that [Sri Lankan women], have formed the backbone of an enormous economic shift toward export-oriented industrialization . . . . [Bringing] about benefits, particularly to families and households where stable incomes are usually non-existent(1).

Delia was a round character, at first she comes out as being docile. She took up numerous insults, disrespect and worst of all physical violence from her arrogant cruel and barbaric husband. She has bore with the mentioned lifestyle for about fifteen years. Zora Neal Hurston says that Delia had brought love to the union and he had brought a longing for the flesh. Two months after the wedding, he had given her first of the many to come brutal beatings (699). This trait turns out to be one of her major flaws that cause her to suffer a great deal of problems in her tormenting marriage.

Later on, Delia was able to change to an assertive woman.” She seized the iron skillet from the stove and struck a defensive pose, which act surprised him greatly, coming from her. It cowed him and did not strike her as he usually did. (Hurston 699). This act of bravery translates to a stronger woman. Even when Sykes brought a snake to the house, she stood for what was rightfully hers despite her great phobia for snakes.

Hurston tells us that when Sykes tried to stir up an argument, Delia replied,” Ah aint for no fuss tonight Sykes. Ah just come from taking sacrament at the church house”(698). This portrays

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