Zora Neale Hurston’s embrace of black culture and language was an inspiration to Alice Walker. “I realized that unless I came out with everything I had supporting her, there was every chance that she would slip back into obscurity,” Walker says of the Harlem Renaissance writer and anthropologist.
Film Excerpt: Alice Walker on Zora Neale Hurston
“Alice Walker was absolutely instrumental in allowing a much larger audience to even know about Hurston,” according to Jennifer DeVere Brody. “I think at the time, 1979, when she did her first essay on Hurston, all of Hurston’s books were out of print.”
“Her work had a sense of black people as complete, complex, undiminished human beings and that was crucial to me as a writer,” says Walker.
Alice Walker: Beauty in Truth premieres nationally Friday, February 7 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings).