Essay on My Thoughts

Submitted By timtimk12
Words: 859
Pages: 4

Paper #1 English 102
24 February 2014

"The Sweat of Fifteen Years"

In the story written by Zora Neale Hurston called "Sweat", there are two African American characters Sykes and Delia. Sykes and Delia have been married for 15 years and all Sykes continues to do is complain, beat, and torment Delia in daily life. Delia takes the abuse and continually serves Sykes by doing the town's wash all while acting like a good wife. That is until she has enough with the never ending pain and takes a stand against Sykes' cruelty and embodies the idea of courage. Delia represents the battle between good and evil that is still constant throughout the story. Sykes beats her in more ways then one, both verbal and physical. Sykes abuse of Delia started several weeks after their honeymoon and continued to wear down Delia throughout the years. One of Sykes problems was that Delia also does the town's wash and rubbing the clothes against a washboard chiseled her into an incredibly toned figure. The issue is that Sykes likes his woman plump and fat and decides to take another woman named Bertha. Sykes abuses the sanity of marriage by showing off his new woman to his wife numerous times. One of these times, Sykes brings her into town and lets her buy whatever she wants from the country store while Delia has too look onward from her wash cart. Sykes shows no respect for what Delia does everyday which she pours her life and sweat into providing food for him and Bertha. The beats don't stop and Sykes doesn't listen to any pleading or advice from Delia. Delia is slowly building up hurts of the pass fifteen years. Sykes also plays many pranks on his wife just to torment her and give himself momentary pleasure. Sykes sneaks into the kitchen with the bull whip and lays it onto of Delia to scare her. Sykes knows that Delia hates snakes which are described as "earth worms" in the story. Sykes takes the practical jokes even farther by capturing a snake and putting it into a crate to scare Delia when she got home. Later in the story Sykes puts in her laundry basket which ends up being his undoing because the snake gets out and bites him while Sykes struggles to find a match. Delia has been abused for a decade and a half and is finally trying to muster the courage to stand up agains the evil in the story, which is Sykes. When Sykes is complaining about Delia's duty of washing the white people's clothes while kicking over the piles of fresh laundry, Delia responds courageously, "What’s it got to do with you, Sykes? Mah tub of suds is filled yo’ belly with vittles more times than yo’ hands is filled it. Mah sweat is done paid for this house and Ah reckon Ah kin keep on sweatin’ in it." Sykes is taken back by this new found strength and fortitude and doesn't know how to respond. Delia is taking one step at a time to becoming more courageous against the evil in her house. Another time that Delia takes hold of the situation is when she goes to bed and Sykes rips the covers from her. Instead of yelling at Sykes…