Celebrating 75 Years

75 years ago Zora Neale Hurston published the story of one woman's evolving selfhood through three marriages and, unbeknownst to many, changed the landscape of American literature. When first published in 1937, Their Eyes Were Watching God was generally dismissed by reviewers and the book even went out of print for almost 30 years. But since its reissue in paperback edition by the University of Illinois Press in 1978, Their Eyes Were Watching God has become perhaps the most widely read and highly acclaimed novel in the cannon of African-American literature.

We look forward to celebrating the 75th Anniversary of this landmark novel!

Congratulations to Vanessa Irvin Morris on receiving the 2012 RUSA Zora Neale Hurston Award! Click here to read all about it.

Harper Perennial will continue to publish the Harlem Renaissance writer for the next decade.

Publishers Weekly Staff -- Publishers Weekly, 3/3/2010 9:18:31 AM

HarperCollins and its Harper Perennial imprint have reached an agreement with the Zora Neale Hurston Trust that will allow the house to continue as the exclusive publisher of Zora Neale Hurston's adult backlist for the next decade. Hurston, the renowned Harlem Renaissance-era writer and folklorist, is author of such classics as Their Eyes Were Watching God and Mules and Men. Fifty years after her death, Hurston's books sell nearly 500,000 copies annually.

The new deal was negotiated between Harper Perennial editor Jeanette Perez, and Victoria Sanders of Victoria Sanders & Associates, the literary agent who has represented the Zora Neale Hurston Trust since 1996. Despite her prominence during the years of the Harlem Renaisance, the works of Hurston fell into obscurity in the later years of her life. Interest in her life and in her works was revived through the efforts of novelist Alice Walker, who wrote an important article about Hurston for Ms. Magazine in 1975, and a through network TV special organized by Oprah Winfrey in 2005.

"Zora Neale Hurston is one of the most important American writers of the 20th century. We are very pleased that we'll continue to publish her books into the next decade," Carrie Kania, Senior Vice President and Publisher of Harper Perennial said. "It's also very exciting to introduce her works to a new generation of readers with aggressive plans regarding ebooks and new print editions of her classic works."

Jump at the Sun, a documentary about Zora Neale Hurston will be re-broadcast on PBS' American Masters next Monday, February 22nd. Check your local listings here.

To learn more about the film, and to purchase copies, click here. Educators should click here.

Congratulations to Anthony Loum from Brooklyn Public Library. He has won the 2nd Annual Zora Neale Hurston Award! Click here to read why Anthony was chosen.

Click here to read.

A feature on Reading About Haiti ran in the Globe and Mail on Friday January 15th and featured Tell My Horse. Click here to read.

Zora Neale Hurston was born on January 7th, 1891. Make good on that New Year’s Resolution to reread a classic and pay tribute to Zora’s literary legacy by picking up one of her books today! If you’ve already read Their Eyes Were Watching God pick up one of her other novels such as Jonah's Gourd Vine or start with her short stories in The Complete Stories. You can read chapter excerpts of all of Hurston’s books at HarperCollins.com.

Folks in Eatonville and Fort Pierce, FL are gearing up for their annual Zora Festivals!

The Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts and Humanities will take place January 23-31, 2010. More information is available here: ZoraNealeHurstonFestival.com

The Sixth Celebrating Zora Festival kicks off with a Hurston birthday celebration on January 9th (Hurston’s actual birthday is the 7th) with events following throughout the winter months. More information is available here: http://www.stlucieco.gov/zorafest/

Check back for updates and scheduled events for both festivals soon.

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