Thursday, March 3, 2016


Finish reading Sweat and complete the following questions for discussion in class on Monday.

  1. Discuss the meaning of the title from the perspective of the biblical account of Adam and Eve and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden? Does this frame of reference help readers to understand key patterns in the story?
  2. Discuss the symbolic meanings of Sykes’s whip and the snake.
  3. Why is Sykes so abusive towards Delia?
  4. Discuss the role of the men at the store.
  5. Why does Delia not warn Sykes that the rattlesnake is in the bedroom? How do readers reconcile her behavior with the image of her as a good Christian?
  6. What is the effect for the reader of Hurston switching back and forth between the colloquial speech of her characters and standard English (Remember Twain in Huckleberry Finn?)