How It Feels To Be Colored Me

Words: 900
Pages: 4

Self-realization or self-actualization is defined as fulfillment of one’s talents and potentialities, especially considered as a drive or need to present in everyone. Hurston allowed the reader to be her passenger along her experience of finding herself and what works for her. I think Hurston was true to herself and there were specific instances in when she chose to “wear the mask” which stemmed from Paul Lawrence Dunbar’s’ poem “We Wear the Mask”. The theme of self-actualization and realization is shown in Hurston’s “How It Feels to Be Colored Me” through awareness, confidence, and masking.
In Hurston’s essay “How It Feels to Be Colored Me”, the reader is taken along on her journey of awareness. Hurston’s awareness of her heritage was continuously mention throughout the short narrative. The transition from a small predominately black town into a mixed-race town was a shock for Hurston as she did not see herself as the “Zora of Orange County anymore, she was now a little colored girl”. The statement shows that she knew that along with the change in her environment, the high status that she once held was hidden and in the eyes of the others she was an average black girl. During her porch sittings, she was critical of the whites that passed through and was observant as to how they acted when compared to the Southerners. She stated in the text that she only saw white people when “they rode through town and
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By allowing herself to look beyond the color of her skin, she exhibited to the reader how the theme of self-actualization and realization was shown through awareness, confidence, and masking in her work “How It Feels to Be Colored Me”. After reading the essay, it gave me a sense of empowerment. This is a reading that I would suggest others to closely read and analyze to get a deeper understanding of the message that she is trying to send to blacks. It proves that even a negative can be turned into a