Name: Zora Neale Hurston
Basics: She was dedicated to telling the stories of the African diaspora. As an anthropologist she gathered and collected the local folklore and stories of African people in the Caribbean and throughout Latin America. She lived in Harlem during the 1920s where she became a part of the Harlem Renaissance, meeting the likes of Langston Hughes and other writers of that period. Her writing masterpiece, which holds power till this day was Their Eyes Were Watching God. It is the work that cemented her place in literary history. Sadly, she died poor and alone being buried in an unmarked grave. Something that Alice Walker rectified in later years.
Why I Chose Her: She’s someone I love dearly as a writer. Her personal history is one of adversity, but a continued pursuit of her passion despite it. I think the lesson from Zora’s life is that we have to live our best life and not worry about the accolades. If we live our lives to the fullest then the accolades will make their way into the world eventually. I know Zora has to be smiling from Heaven knowing her works did indeed touch many.