Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays

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Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays

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    Social Change 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.

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    Their Eyes Were Watching God was just like its author, Zora Neale Hurston, a outstanding product of the Harlem Renaissance. In her book, she carryouts the life of an African American woman named Janie Crawford who comes back to her hometown of Eatonville, Florida. Due to Janie’s mother leaving her at a young age, she was raised by her grandmother. The fact about her grandmother is that she was a slave and her viewpoint of the world is distorted. Her idea of a perfect life for a African American woman is that she should be married to anyone from a upper class society.

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    Identity is composed of not only self-perception but also the perception of others. Consequently, relationships are vital in the forming and expressing of one’s identity. Healthy relationships allow for the expression of oneself without fear of consequences, whereas unhealthy relationships put pressure on one to change for one’s partner. Zora Neale Hurston’s novel Their Eyes Were Watching God explores the difference between healthy and unhealthy relationships, focusing on how each affects the expression of one’s identity.

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    Their Eyes Were Watching God is a powerful novel in which we follow the life events of the central character, Janie Crawford. While the novel revolves around the men that shape and distort her life, the principal element is the quest in which Janie undergoes in search of self fulfilment and her own identity. While many of her relationships do not flourish, they teach her many valuable lessons and allow her to progress in her search for spiritual enlightenment. Race and gender prove to be some of the most crucial themes in the novel as they exert prominent influence on the series of events that unfold throughout Their Eyes Were Watching God. In this essay, I will examine race and gender as well as examining the relationship between the two and how they play such a significant role in the life of Janie Crawford and her partners.

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    Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston can be characterized as an African-American novel; at least, according to Toni Morrison’s criteria for this genre of novel, it can be. Morrison claims that for a novel to be categorized as African-American, it must contain three things: a “community commenting on or responding to the action,” “the presence of an ancestor” who provides insight and wisdom to the main character, and “an oral quality.” This novel contains all three of these criteria in the forms of characters like Nanny Crawford and the porch-sitters, and in Janie’s oral telling of her story to her friend Pheoby Watson. Through these characteristics, Their Eyes Were Watching God makes a connection to traditional African storytelling

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    In Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, there are many meal scenes that could correlate to Foster’s idea of communion whilst dining. This novel is loaded with metaphorical meal scenes, all of which contribute significantly to the story. There are a few important meal scenes though that develop and contribute to the plot more than others. The first of these occurs when Jody decides to open the store and give away free food. The second is when the people of the glades go to Janie’s house for mirth and company.

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    A LIFE FULL OF BLISS Fitting in is what society is all about, it seems that following what others tell you is more valuable than being your true self. In Zora Neale Hurston’s novel “ Their Eyes Were Watching God” shows that living as who you are brings more joy to yourself. With the main character Janie, we know how living in a society of judgement affected her. From living in Eatonville and being married three times, Janie goes from living in unhappiness to fulfilling herself with what brings joy into her life.

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    Everyone has inner ideas that they wish to expresses, however are unable to put them into words. When people do try to convey their ideas, their dialogue may be misinterpreted. One reason for this is because when you talk to people, emotions take a role in your dialogue. Being unable to express your emotions is what leads to people assuming things in your dialogue, potentially misunderstanding you. In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, the main character Janie has many thoughts in her “high” monologue which she expresses; however, was unable to be interpreted in her “low” dialogue because of emotions changing the tone of her speech; which in turn, causes an inability for her audience to comprehend her intentions.

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    LIMA 1  Some may say that although some may women may relate, none are the same. They all have qualities and morals that differ them from the rest. Some may be victims to domestic abuse, yet others would never let their spouse think of raising their hands to them. Some are more feminine while others feel less comfortable behaving girly. Some are free-spirited, while others abide by all the rules society places on females.

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    “Their Eyes Were Watching God Hurston, Zora Neale” The book “Their Eyes Were Watching God Hurston”, was written during the Harlem Renaissance, which was a period of time between the end of World War 1 and the middle of the 1920s where the cultural, social, and artistic explosion took place. Harlem was considered a cultural center for the artist, musicians, photographers, poets, and scholars (Jim Crow). This book was the first novel to be written by a black woman in that Era.

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    “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order” - John Burroughs. The novel “Their Eyes Were Watching God” was written by Zora Neale Hurston and published in 1937. The film “Beasts of the Southern Wild” was directed by Benh Zeitlin and released in 2012. The film “Beasts of the Southern Wild” and the novel “ Their Eyes Were Watching God” have some critical similarities. These include the characteristics of the protagonists, each protagonist 's relationship with nature, and the climax of a destructive storm.

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    For instance, there was Claude Mckay (1889-1948) who was one of the earliest and most central figures of the Harlem Renaissance and he got great reputation with his book Harlem Shadow (1922) and his first novel Home to Harlem (1928). African American writers of the Harlem Renaissance such as Arna Bontemps, Jesse Fausset, Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston reflected the experiences of African Americans with the forms and technique of modernism and their works had a continuing influence on American literature. With the novel Their Eyes were Watching God (1937) by significant female novelist Zora Neale Huston (1891-1960), the experiences of African Americans were addressed

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    Zora Neale Hurston 's Their Eyes Were Watching God is a remarkable novel that examines the life of the protagonist, Janie Crawford, as she struggles to find love that fulfills her. The novel is set in post slavery Florida, where African American men and women are acclimating to freedom and making their place in society. Janie Crawford is aware as she was raised by her grandmother, who was a former slave, in the absence of her mother and father. Janie 's grandmother tries her best to raise Janie to be intelligent, selective, and confident so that she can live a comfortable life that isn 't marred by hardship as her mother and grandmother lives were. When Janie is sixteen, her grandmother requests that she get married.

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    “Freedom cannot be achieved unless women have been emancipated from all forms of oppression” (Nelson Mandela). Women throughout history has been shown to be treated unequally compared to men, they are heavily repressed by stereotypes of society and by men who believe they are superior compared to women. Zora Neale Hurston explores the roles of women in the novel, Their Eyes were Watching God, through the characters of Janie and her second husband, Joe Starks. Even with two different marriages, Janie never got the chance to be who she really is. The men in her life had held Janie back from what she wanted.

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    The novel Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston supports a theme of desire, love, and independence. Neale uses different literary devices such as symbolism and motif. Neale uses symbolism to express the theme of independence, desire and love. For example, uses Janie’s hair to symbolizes her independence and desire. Janie’s hair expresses the breaking the social standard barrier, by having her straight hair worn down which was seen shameful for a woman her age.

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    In any relationship, one changes, whether it is with a family member or a more romantic relationship. Interaction with others affects how one sees themselves and how one will change through the course of the interaction. Janie Crawford, in Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, experiences three different romantic relationships -- each different in its own right. Janie learns a great deal from each relationship.

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    he ambition of Joe Starks In Their Eyes Are Watching God Ambition is a strong desire to do or to achieve something, typically requiring determination and hard work. Ambition often leads to great rewards but often times too much ambition can lead to misfortune. The Character of Joe Starks in Their Eyes Are Watching God has a very prominent amount of Ambition. Stark’s bullied and manipulated people in order to satisfy his own Ambitions. Through the use of indirect characterization, Zora Neely Hurston exhibits how Joe Stark’s ambition destroyed the relationships he had with other people in Their Eyes Are Watching God.

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    In the book, “Their Eyes Were Watching God”, Janie had many relationships with men. And just like all of her other male companions, Tea Cake played second fiddle to the main character of Janie. In “Their Eyes Were Watching God”, Janie had many different love interest which included the likes of Logan Killicks, Jody Starks, and eventually Tea Cake. Before meeting Tea Cake, Janie was just stringing along in two different marriages that just were not in Janie’s favor in terms of her happiness. Janie’s first two husbands ended up basically being duds when it comes to pleasing and treating Jane properly.

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    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. In “Their eyes were watching god”

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    In Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, the main character, Janie, struggles to accomplish her dreams and establish herself for who she is. This dream is constantly changing as Janie matures, meeting new people and learning from her experiences. In addition, Hurston creates a clear division between men and women that is seen and developed throughout the novel. This theme of gender impacts how power is held and the associations between characters. Many women are silenced by their husbands and cannot be themselves.

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