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Juxtaposition In Their Eyes Were Watching God

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Have you ever been in a past relationship and started a new one only to realize you have been comparing the two? You may realize that you desire the past spark that the present does not have. In Zora Neale Hurston's novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, she utilizes juxtaposition to discreetly invite the audience to compare two scenes; whether it be Janie’s reactions to events, Janie’s outlook on a goal or fantasy versus someone else's, or how Janie is treated by her spouse. One of the juxtapositions Hurston includes in her novel is presented after the death of Janie’s second husband, compared to the death of Janie’s final husband. Any individual knowing Janie would idealize a grand funeral and a truly sorrowful widow to the death of her prosperous and well-known…show more content…
The horizon is a major symbol representing Janie’s lifelong search for happiness. Nanny did not approve of Janie’s ideal happiness. She was determined to force Janie to live the way she wanted her to; a way that Nanny never got to live. She wanted Janie to marry someone who would sit her on a pedestal and praise her. However, that is not what Janie fantasized. Nanny had “...taken the biggest thing God ever made, the horizon… and pinched it in to such a little bit of a thing that she could tie it about her granddaughter’s neck tight enough to choke her” (Hurston 85). That is exactly what Nanny did. Janie was forced into her first marriage, and unknowingly her second. Her final marriage represents Janie following her horizon. She had finally found her true happiness with someone who represented her pear tree, another strong symbol enforced by Hurston. The pear tree represented simplicity and pleasure. Every man Janie had married had been older than her, and not exactly what she had envisioned under the pear tree. Finally, she met Tea Cake and felt the feelings she had been longing
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