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Their Eyes Were Watching God Analysis

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‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’, written by Zora Hurston, is a book about empowerment because Janie is constantly fighting for her beliefs/rights. For instance, as the book begins Janie meets her wed, Logan Killocks, she is put right to work by him. When she is put to work she starts to dislike him because he will not let her be free, so she flees with another guy named Jody. Jody promises Janie many things, but once again Janie is restricted of her rights and abused so after his she flees with another man allowing her do what she wants. Tea Cake promises her many things and keeps them: in doing so, he becomes jealous, aggressive, and mentally ill. In the end Janie has to kill him to be set free. As you can see there are many times Janie fights for her empowerment. Throughout Janie’s Journey she searches for love. She searches for love because she wants to find peace. Additionally, she wants to be accepted by her partner. It can be seen in the book when Janie and Jody fight, that she has second thoughts and wants to leave. She is successful throughout her journey because as she fights with Jody and TeaCake she ends up meeting her horizon. This search relates to the theme of identity, showing how important it is for one to express their identity.

Janie acquire’s her own voice and ability to shape her own life after Joe Starks and Tea Cakes death. In both relationships she is free at first, but as the relationship between Janie and her husband’s continue the values Joe and Tea Cake held for Janie start to deteriorate. A correlation can be seen between Joe and Tea Cake: both end up getting jealous of Janie, resulting in beating her, and becoming mentally ill. Through both relationships Janie’s can truly express herself and her independence towards the end. Her chief accomplishments are for her to reach the horizon which she ends up doing. In the process of her reaching the horizon, she has to deal with many obstacles: the town gossip, fight for her freedom from Jody, fight for her life with Tea Cake.

The community shows how transferring messages across town were different from now and back then.Without smartphones and other smart devices people played telephone to spread the news. The people of the community's purpose was to either talk bad about someone or sympathize with many others. The importance of the porch is to spread the news/gossip that goes around town. For example, the story of a mock funeral for the mule was to perceive Jody as the one that cared about the town, as mayor, and to portray Janie to good to attend the funeral: even though the town people did not know Janie wanted to go to the funeral. This example shows the community is bias and will do anything to fit in.

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The concept of judgement in ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’ is very important throughout the book because their are very biased views on situations, that many members of the community follow. In the community, it can be seen that members of it attempt to fit into the community by making sure they can tell or explain the stories of others. They do this to show their strength of not being scared by their fellow members. Additionally, they attempt to do this so they do not face any problems like Janie. Janie, does not follow the communities way of judgement, which leaves her vulnerable to be gossiped about and looked bad upon the community. The judgement is important once again because Janie shows that no matter what the community thinks of her opinion will not be shaped by the community in any way or form. This can relate to the Zora Neale Hurston, when she talks about her life in ‘How It Feels to Be Colored Me’, because in both stories Hurston and Janie take in the comments that offend them, attempting to ignore them to do what's right for them.

Yes, Janie’s story in ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’ can be seen as a Hero’s Journey. Janie’s Status Quo can be seen when she meets Logan Killocks beccause she starts to fall in love with him. Her call to adventure is when she meets someone who appreciates her more, Jody. Jody can be seen as her assistance when he advises her in the beginning to do what she thinks is right. Janie’s departure is when she leaves her hometown and goes to Eatonville with Jody. Janie goes through a series of trials when she moves to a new town with her wed. The death of Jody and him forcing her to do things she does not want to, such as tie her hair up and become controlled by him, brings her to her crisis. This is because the death attempts to restrain her even more from her freedom. Additionally, the death of Jody and meeting her new love Tea Cake brings her to the treasure. Tea Cake excepted Janie for who she is and respected her for what she believes in. As the story progresses the result of Tea Cake allowing her to do everything drives him insane and makes Janie killing him. The death of Tea Cake brought Janie to the return. The new life in her journey is when she is not married to anyone any more. The resolution is when she realizes she has reached the horizon.

The status quo is when she becomes an even wiser person and peaceful. This journey can relate to Janie being shown as a modern hero because throughout her adventure she is doing what she is fighting for her rights. She is represented in the book as a woman that is restricted of rights and is attempting to fight for them like women that are doing it currently.

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Their Eyes Were Watching God Analysis. (2022, August 25). Edubirdie. Retrieved February 26, 2024, from
“Their Eyes Were Watching God Analysis.” Edubirdie, 25 Aug. 2022,
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Their Eyes Were Watching God Analysis [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Aug 25 [cited 2024 Feb 26]. Available from:
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