“Their Eyes Were Watching God” is a novel written by Zora Neale Hurston. The novel portrays Janie, a middle aged black woman who tells her friend Pheoby Watson what has happened to her husband Tea Cake and her adventure. The resulting telling of her story portrays most of the novel. Throughout the novel, Zora Neale Hurston presents the theme of love, or being in a relationship versus freedom and independence, that being in a relationship may hinder one’s freedom and independence. Janie loves to be outgoing and to be able to do what she wants, but throughout the book the relationships that she is in with Logan,Jody and Tea Cake, does not allow her to do that. Neale Hurston further supports this theme with symbolism, like Janie's hair rag that held up her
Desire is a general and popular human sensation. Zora Neale Hurston discusses many instances of desire in Their Eyes Were Watching God. The novel portrays numerous varieties of desire that demonstrate the protagonist, Janie’s alteration from wanting an object to desiring a specific idea throughout the novel. As Janie acquires her own desires and possibly lives a better and more fulfilling life, Hurston indicates that these desires are in fact not structured by Janie’s own thoughts and experiences, but rather implicated by antagonists in the novel and also often making Janie the desired focus. Through the first four chapters of Their Eyes Were Watching God, Hurston allows Janie to experience multiple life altering desires that mold her into
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
Her Story, Her Voice The unique story that is Their Eyes Were Watching God is a story of voices collected together to create one big voice. Hurston uses many characters’ voices to help Janie find her own, actual voice and tell her story by the end of the novel. The story by Zora Neale Hurston is a frame story which is a story within a story. Hurston, like many other authors, uses the frame narrative to help the story come full circle and create a sense that the reader is part of the story.
In Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, Janie suffers from hardship in two relationships before she can find her true love. Janie explains to her best friend, Pheoby, how she searches for love. Therefore Pheoby wants to hear the true story, rather than listening to the porch sitters. Throughout the book Janie experiences different types of love with three different men; Logan Killicks, Joe Starks, and Vergible "Tea Cake" Woods.
As Janie is laying down at sixteen years old beneath a pear tree in the spring, it becomes a symbol to her of the optimal relationship. Janie marries to Logan Killicks to please her Nanny before she dies. As Janie cries to her Nanny she says to her "Ah wants things sweet wid mah marriage, lak when you sit under a pear tree and think." (p 24) she admits to not being happy with a relationship she is in with Logan. As the Pear Tree continues to grow, so does Janie’s understanding of her optimal relationship.
Toni Morrison’s A Mercy portrays a young slave, Florens, struggles with her past as well as her life as a slave. Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God shows a woman, Janie, who struggles through various relationships in her life, but in the end, they help her find her freedom and individualism. Both stories have different story lines, but upon a closer look, it is easy to see that Florens and Janie have common factors in their lives; which includes, both characters are isolated by others, both characters want to love someone, both character’s guardians make decisions for them that they do not understand which causes conflict, and finally, both characters commit difficult actions which ends up changing their lives.
Zora Neale Hurston, an author during the Harlem Renaissance, wrote Their Eyes Were Watching God, an amazing novel written about the losses and loves of a lady named Janie Crawford. The author describes the way Janie found out who she really was and what love was throughout her three marriages. Janie’s first two marriages were unfulfilling and not healthy for herself. Janie realized what true love was when she met Tea Cake. Janie’s first marriage was to a man named Logan Killicks, which was forced upon her by her grandmother.
Written by Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God, follows a young woman named Janie Crawford and her coming of age story. The novel is introduced with Janie returning back to Eatonville after the passing of her husband Tea Cake. In the opening scene, Janie opens up to her friend Pheoby and tells her how things have been since she had left with Tea cake two years ago. However, Phoebe doesn't understand the story Janie is trying to tell her because she incorporates events from when her grandmother was around thus confusing her friend. Therefore, the opening scene is actually the closing scene, which leads to a flashback that eventually encompasses the whole novel. At the age of 16, Janie was sitting outside under a pear tree when she witnesses a revelation. Under the pear tree, she witnesses a bee pollinating the
In The Eyes are Watching God, the author Zora Neale Hurston expresses the struggles of women and black societies of the time period. When Hurston published the book, communities were segregated and black communities were full of stereotypes from the outside world. Janie, who represents the main protagonist and hero, explores these communities on her journey in the novel. Janie shows the ideals of feminism, love, and heroism in her rough life in The Eyes. Janie, as the hero of the novel, shows the heroic qualities of determination, empathy, and bravery.
In Their Eyes Were Watching God Zora Neale Hurston develops a contrast between the male and female genders of the time period of the story, and the male and female gender of today. Hurston wrote this novel in or about a time when women were considered simple-minded , women were disempowered by the empowered man in the relationship, and women can only gain power through marriage. But when Janie kisses Johnny Taylor, her view of men changes after seeing “a dust-bearing bee sink into the sanctum of a bloom; the thousand sister-calyxes arch to meet the love embrace and the ecstatic shiver of the tree from root to tiniest branch creaming in every blossom and frothing with delight. So this was a marriage!
For example, he uses gothic imagery to describe the surroundings of the ravine. “Black crickets and dark green frogs and the black stream. The colours black and green can be associated with the atmosphere of the place, giving a scary ambience, making it more vulnerable. Bradbury also uses symbolism at the end of the story “She wished she were back in that time now, drinking from it, the night still young and not begun”. Here she is looking back at her life, wishing she could go back in time and redo the day.
In Their Eyes were Watching God, Janie’s hair is described ad nauseum; in fact, it is described so often that one cannot help but notice its importance to the text as a whole. The author uses Janie’s hair to demonstrate Janie as an independent woman. To Janie, her hair is one of her defining features, and it becomes a surrogate for her identity. While Janie works inside her and Jody’s store, Jody forces her to wrap up her hair in a head-rag. To Janie, the “business of the head-rag irked her endlessly”, even though she did not want it wrapped up, Jody did.
Their Eyes Were Watching God tells the story of how one man, Tea Cake, changes how a grown woman named Janie views life, opportunity, and happiness. Zora Neale Hurston employs parallelism in order to reveal the dynamic of this relationship between Janie and Tea Cake and writes, “He drifted off into sleep and Janie looked down on him and felt a self-crushing love. So her soul crawled out from its hiding place” (Hurston 128). At the very end of the book, Hurston writes again, “Here was peace. She pulled in her horizon like a great fish-net.
Throughout the story, there are symbols that significantly expressed the setting and the primary characters involved. Examples of the symbols could include: a heart as it represents Mrs. Mallard’s heart condition as well as her variant emotions; the window, whether it be opened or closed, could represent Mrs. Mallard’s freedom and life in a sense that she wanted to pass before she found new hope through the observance of the sky, and lastly, the chair which could represent Mrs. Mallard’s freedom and newfound independence after being oppressed within her relationship and society’s expectations of women in that period of time. References to the symbolism of the heart could be found throughout the story