Wonder Women #GGxPE: Zora Neale Hurston

In honor of our collab with the fabulous Gia Graham, Paper Epiphanies will be highlighting the 6 amazing women depicted in these cards during the entire month of February in a new series we call Wonder Women #GGxPE. In this series we aim to show you a side to these notable women that you might not have seen before by presenting, first, the brief biography found on the back of every #GGxPE card and, second, 10 fun facts about their careers, activism and lives. We hope you appreciate them as much as we do!


Zora Neale Hurston and Her 10 Fun Facts

Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960), best known for her acclaimed novel “Their Eyes Were Watching God”, was an author, an anthropologist and a fixture in the thriving art scene during the Harlem Renaissance.

1. Hurston was raised in Eatonville, Florida, one of the first all-black towns in the US.

2. In a career that spanned 30+ years, Hurston authored and published seven books—including an autobiography, several short stories, plays and essays.

3. In 1917, Hurston pretended she was ten years younger than she actually was so she could enter public high school, and never added those years back— always saying she was ten years younger than her actual age for the rest of her life.

4. Hurston went to Howard college for her undergraduate education, making a mark on the university by, for example, co-founding the university’s newspaper.

5. She won a scholarship to finish her undergraduate education at Barnard College of Columbia University, making her the sole black student to attend at that time.

6. Hurston was married three times, two of them lasting less than a year.

7. Hurston made several trips around the Caribbean and the American South, conducting Anthropological studies, which she would then use later to inspire and inform her writing.

8. Hurston never made much money from her work and, following her death, remained in an unmarked grave from lack of funds for a headstone until 1973 when Alice Walker found her grave and gave her a simple headstone herself.

9. In 1927, Hurston was captivated by a the story of Kossola, the last surviver of the last trans-Atlantic slave trip. At the time, she couldn’t find someone to publish her nonfiction account of his story, but this past year, the book has finally been released: Barracoon: The Story of the Last “Black Cargo”.

10. To all that met her, Hurston was a vibrant, bright personality, who would captivate most anyone she met.