In her epiphany from Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie realizes her intrinsic capacity as an individual, and frees herself from Jody’s covetous ways in the act of letting down her hair. In the quote, “She tore off the kerchief from her plentiful hair...the glory was there,” Janie’s hair symbolizes her power and strength because it holds glory. By Janie releasing her hair, she finally notices the greatness that she has, which allows her to now view herself as eminent individual whom has independence. Because Jody made her tie her hair up as a device to hinder her individuality and identity in their marriage, he is intimidated by her reluctance to comply with his controlling demands. By Janie letting down her hair as an act of liberation after
The “Rock Pile” by James Baldwin and “Their Eyes Were Watching God” by Zora Neale Hurston are two stories that examined black male resistance to emasculation. The men in these stories lived in patriarchal societies, and they reaped the benefits of a structure that favored men. In both of these stories, the male characters are dominant figures in their households, and when they felt like their manhood was being attacked, they retaliate viciously.
Social change in our society can be good and bad at the same time; it can fix things that are not operating well, but it can also badly affect what could be currently working. In Zora Neale Hurston’s novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie Crawford proves her independence by making decisions that change her life both positively and negatively. From the beginning to the end of the novel, Janie switches from allowing her grandma to create her life to taking charge and dictating her own path.
3. Janie wears an apron, a head rag, and overalls at the most significant points in her life. Analyze the way in which the clothing reflects her inner self and how Hurston's use of clothing is symbolic of Janie's development throughout the novel.
During the 1920s, there was a period that was called the Harlem Renaissance, during which African Americans got the opportunity to be creative and express themselves through music and art. Langston Hughes and Louis Armstrong were a few of the famous people who came from this period in the 1920s. Another famous person that came out of the Harlem Renaissance was Zora Neale Hurston, a multi-talented African American woman who wrote stories that described the life and struggles of the 1920s through the stories she wrote. Hurston was an American writer, who was able to connect to the hearts of most people from all kinds of different races and religions during the period. Even today, her readers still feel the connection Hurston was trying to make
In Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937), Zora Neale Hurston quotes: “She knew now that
“Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston”. In this story the main character Janie gets married three times. Her first husband Logan Killicks didn’t work out because she was forced to marry him by her Nanny. The second husband Joe Starks, she kinda had feelings for him, but it wasn’t anything big. Then her third husband was Tea Cake, she love him and actually had feelings for him. Now all three husbands represent something in Janie’s emotional, spiritual, and physical growth.
Both Joe and Tea Cake’s funerals are representative of how they lived as people. Joe constantly exuded an aura of power and dominance and made people respect him. As a result, he was seen as a god-like figure by many and in a sense was impossible to relate to. The imagery of “[p]eople on farm horses and mules; babies riding astride of brothers ' and sisters ' backs” (88) makes it seem as though they are going on a religious pilgrimage rather than grieving over a loved one. By mentioning how the “expensive black folds” of the coffin “were resurrection and life” Joe may be likened to Jesus in how he was resurrected after three days of being killed (88). However, although many idolized him, Janie did not feel remorse during the funeral. Rather,
When first discovering her womanhood under the pear tree, Janie describes how “she wanted to struggle in life but it seemed to elude her” (11). Struggle seemed to be all around Janie, yet she didn’t let it affect her. After a pressured marriage to a man that she wasn’t attracted to, Janie kept looking forward and found a way out. However, that way out was even more difficult than the first. For 20 years, Janie waited for something to change in her abusive relationship to Jody, except it only ended when he died. Finally, she married Tea Cake who showed her what it was like to be loved and feel love. In each of these marriages, Janie fights for her independence that was previously denied from her. She refuses to give up on her dream for true love and is only satisfied after she finds it with Tea
Janie realizes what she deserves in a marriage and runs off with Starks to live a happy life with him. Things do not go as planned for Janie as she starts to realize how manipulative Joe Starks is of her. Starks has full control over Janie with his tyrannical behavior and takes things even further when he establishes complete dominance over Janie. Janie soon realizes that Starks has taken advantage of her “It was her image of Jody tumbled down and shattered. But looking at it she saw that it never was the flesh and blood figure of her dreams. Just something she had grabbed up to drape her dreams over” (Hurston 72). Janie figures out that Joe is not the man she had married when the “image of Jody tumbled down” she begins to understand that Joe was not at all significant to her because he never cared for her and instead he was a bad influence. Janie figures out that he “never was the flesh and blood figure of her dreams” the life she desires of with Joe Starks, is an allusion and Janie’s dreams are once again crushed. Janie is deceived by Joe because he represents empty dreams for Janie, he was a “drape [for] her dreams” Joe took advantage of Janie and manipulates her to do excessive labour for him in the store and constantly silences her. Furthermore, Joe Starks never treats Janie with respect as he views her as an object and spends his time commanding her. Joe pushes away the opportunity
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.
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
Though Janie faces loss multiple times through the deaths of these people that she loves dearly, she gains qualities in herself which she can use later in her life. In her first relationship with Joe, Janie is continually oppressed in terms of when she’s allowed to speak and how she controls her own appearance but this oppression only works to shape her personality into one that can speak back and be more assertive in front of anyone. By having to be in a situation where she has to choose whether to shoot Tea Cake, she becomes more resilient and proactive. Only through the loss of youthfulness and two loved ones is Janie able to truly discover who she, conveying Hurston’s larger message that self-discovery is fueled through loss and
Janie loved the conversation and sometimes she thought up good stories on the mule, but Joe had