Paper 2 English 111

Submitted By lilruka21
Words: 791
Pages: 4

Jennie Marucha
Professor Powell
April 28, 2015
If you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say it all. The famous words that your mother taught you as a child. As you grow older, you realize how much those words really mean, on so many different levels. Most likely, in life, you will experience times where you feel the need to let karma run its course. Me, personally, have had times where I have had to say no to what everyone else would do in order to gain the greater outcome. In the short story “Sweat” by Zora Neale Hurston, Delia, an older aged woman faced the same question. Does she help the man, Sykes, who has been a waste of time her whole life? Or does she do the “right thing” and help save him in his last minutes of life? In this particular case she was thinking what I had, there is some good that can come out the situation that may seem terrible at first glance. Delia should not feel morally obligated to save such a man who has emotionally, physically, and mentally drained her self-worth her entire life. Delia worked as a launderer for a white family in town. She spent every day taking care of house and washing clothes for this family so she could provide food and shelter for her and her husband. Over the years they had been married, Sykes grew away from her and strayed off with other women. Many times Delia was talked about from the townsmen about how she looked. They would ask “how Syke kin stomuck dat big black greasy Mogul he’s layin round’ wid, git me.” (Hurston 566) She didn’t have any time to work on her appearance because she was always working to provide for her and Sykes. After everything she has done for him over the years, he still strays off with other women, and speaks to her in very degrading manners. Delia let her emotions sink in and did not bare to tell him how she felt. Two months after they were married, Sykes started beating on Delia. He put his hands on her multiple times for talking back to him, for working for the white people, and expressing how she felt about him in any way. This abuse, over time, has made her timid to him, but very angry inside. With a stern voice he yelled to her “..put mah fist up side yo’ head” (564) without any hesitation. Knowing Delia hated the sight of snakes; Sykes brought one home and set it by the front door to scare her. He laughed at the sight of her fear but Delia was already on her last straw with him and told him to remove the snake and how much she hated him for everything he puts her through. She says “ahh hates yah lak uh suck-egg dog” (569) Finally standing her ground and telling him how she truly felt without any fear of being hurt again.…