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 Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie is a young woman who struggles to find her identity. Janie Separates her exterior life from her interior life by keeping certain thoughts and emotions inside her head, and she reconciles this by while presenting the proper woman society expects her to be. Janie also silently protests to those expectations by acting against what people require of her, both emotionally and physically. When Janie’s rude and abusive husband, Joe, dies, Janie is glad because she is finally free from him.
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.
Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. So much of life in its meshes! She called in her soul to come and see” (265). Hurston beautifully depicts this image of Janie’s soul emerging as a statement of her love for Tea Cake and of her vulnerability when she is with him. Likewise, at the end of the story, Janie calls on her soul to come out yet again at the moment in which she reflects upon her life with Tea Cake and in a way thanks him for allowing her to be free.
Hurston tells the story of Janie, a black woman who because of her grandmother experiences and beliefs was forced to marry into a loveless marriage with Logan Killicks, a hard-working farmer who had 60 acres of land and could provide for Janie. This marriage ended when Janie ran away with Joe Stark, a man that she fell in love with and thought could give her the love absent between her and Logan. But Janie soon realized that her second marriage wouldn’t turn out better than her first. Joe was just as controlling and degrading as Logan. He hardly expressed his love for Janie and spoke to her like an incompetent child.
Although some readers might argue that the characters do not contribute to Janie’s voice, it is clear through the details that Hurston places in the novel that they very much do help create Janie’s voice. They play an important part in Hurston’s novel because they are Janie’s story. The characters in the novel make up who Janie becomes and contribute to making her the way she is and therefore contribute to her voice. Through telling the story to Phoeby, Janie finds her voice with the help of the others in the story, which make up the frame
The empowerment of black women wasn 't present in the Harlem Renaissance and in this novel it shows the empowerment of black women. Zora Neale Hurston’s writing in Their Eyes Were Watching God, departs from the Harlem Renaissance through the common recurrence of black women
Conclusion Their Eyes Were Watching God is Hurston’s document to explain the impact of the history which is represented by the legacy of slavery on the present dilemma of her female protagonist Janie. As Janie’s grandmother was abused physically and exploited sexually and her mother was also raped ,Janie develops her past history within the era of post- Emancipation and attempt to find the real concept of her identity and self-fulfilment. Janie tries to put an end to the African –American women’s thoughts which are influenced by the white culture.
In Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, the long-lasting effects of slavery have taken a toll on Janie Crawford. Janie’s grandmother was raped by her master and had a child named Leafy. Leafy, although not born into slavery, endured a similar fate, which led her to run away, leaving her mother to raise her child, Janie. Janie’s appearance, showing strong European features, was both praised and shamed by society. This double standard was created by racism and was able to remain present due to segregation.
In Zora Neale Hurston’s short story “Sweat” and her essay “How It Feels to Be Colored Me” the African American social group is being represented in many ways. The texts have similar ways that African Americans are represented for the time period. The African Americans or “colored people” are represented in an aspect that comes from the author's point of view. The African Americans are represented as being unbothered, growing up in a closed community, playing the game with whites, and optimistic.
In the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, we follow our protagonist, Janie, through a journey of self-discovery. We watch Janie from when she was a child to her adulthood, slowly watching her ideals change while other dreams of hers unfortunately die. This is shown when Jane first formulates her idea of love, marriage, and intimacy by comparing it to a pear tree; erotic, beautiful, and full of life. After Janie gets married to her first spouse, Logan Killicks, she doesn’t see her love fantasy happening, but she waits because her Nanny tells her that love comes after marriage. Janie, thinking that Nanny is wise beyond her years, decides to wait.
In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, the protagonist Janie, is influenced by others to change her ideals. Hurston vividly portrays Janie’s outward struggle while emphasising her inward struggle by expressing Janie’s thoughts and emotions. In Kate Chopin’s The Awakening the protagonist is concisely characterized as having “that outward existence which conforms, the inward life which questions,” as Janie does. Janie conforms outwardly to her life but questions inwardly to her marriages with Logan Killicks, her first husband, and Joe Starks, her second husband; Janie also questions her grandmother's influence on what love and marriage is.
“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.
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.
As Maria Tai Wolff says “for telling to be successful, it must become a presentation of sights with words. The best talkers are “big picture talkers”. For Hurston, the construction of African American identity requires a voice that can make you see, a voice that celebrates the visible presence of black bodies.