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Nella Larsen's novel "Quicksand" defies any stereotypes about black women during the Harlem Renaissance.

Date Submitted: 06/17/2003 08:16:20
Category: / Social Sciences / Sociology
Length: 4 pages (1120 words)
Views: 133183

At first glance it seems that Nella Larsen wrote "Quicksand" just to irritate and annoy her readers with a wishy-washy black heroine who has no direction in her life, yet is constantly unsatisfied with her available roles. I was personally offended when this fictional woman, Helga Crane, was given opportunity after opportunity, first a decent job at a well-respected school, then an employer who helps her get on her feet in New York, then money …

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…to stop complaining and to do something about it. However I believe it was Larsen's idea that we realize what a stranglehold society has on Helga and all the black women of the Harlem renaissance. It is through those hateful characters we can see the true hypocrisy of the philosophers of the day, and perhaps come to understand a little more clearly that no one person can be defined and placed neatly into any category.

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