Then Janie felt a pain remorseless sweet that left her lime and languid. Instead, Hurston introduces a third way of achieving self-autonomy through Tea Cake. Starks becomes a figure of authority in the town due to his access to money and his determination to create the first black town. Hurston had attended the school, then known as Morgan Academy, in 1917. In 1927, a decade before writing Their Eyes Were Watching God, Hurston traveled south to collect folk songs and folk tales through an anthropological research fellowship arranged by her mentor.
Half gods are worshipped in wine and flowers. For the first time in many, many years she is free. Taken from chapter sixteen, the author offers an exception to the gender dichotomy presented in the opening passage of the novel. Lastly, her hair is straight — regarded as a white trait — a characteristic that some believe provides her with a sense of privilege often only reserved for white males. All gods who receive homage are cruel.
Unhappy, disillusioned, and lonely, Janie chooses to leave Killicks and runs off with the glib Jody Joe Starks, who takes her to , Florida. He asks her to run the store, but forbids her from participating in the substantial social life that occurs on the store's front porch. Jody falls ill and Janie visits him on his deathbed, wanting to face him and chastise him for the way he had treated her throughout their entire marriage — despite her having supported him and his many pursuits. It speaks volumes of the peculiar perception of gender roles and indifferences. Modern Critical Views: Zora Neale Hurston. Please be sure to cite your sources. As cited in King, The Cambridge Introduction to Zora Neale Hurston.
Thus, Janie's life seems defined by her relation to male-centric spaces. He takes aim with his pistol and begins to fire at her. These lines reflected the turning point in Janie's life, as she consciously chose to marry Logan despite the fact that she did not love him. Turner tries to get Janie to leave Tea Cake and marry her brother, Mr. One day, after Jody insults her appearance, she asserts herself and turns him into a shell of a man when she tells the townspeople what kind of man he really is — impotent and ugly. Lodi, New Jersey: Marco Book Company, 2004. New York: Chelsea House Publishers.
This causes him to fall into a fit of rabies induced hysteria. Janie explains that her mother had abandoned her, leaving her to be reared by her maternal grandmother, Nanny. In addition, Hurston refused to censor women's sexuality, writing in beautiful innuendo to embrace the physical dimension of her main character's romances. Janie's marriage with Logan was her attempt to discover whether, indeed, she is capable of eventually loving a man she did not initially love or not. Tea Cake is Janie's last husband who treats her as more of an equal than Killicks and Starks did, by talking to her and playing checkers with her. Their Eyes Were Watching God. Through Janie, Hurston tells the story of being an African American woman in America's awkward adolescence.
She turns away many potential suitors as she enjoys her new found independence far too much. In the way that the bees interact with the flowers of the pear tree, Janie sees a perfect and natural moment, something that is akin to blissful harmony. That being said, he is not an innocent man. Despite his affections for her, he did at one time beat her and rob her. She spends the novel seeking a voice for herself which she achieves in the end of her story. Zora Neale Hurston and a History of Southern Life.
From her marriage to Logan Killicks to Tea Cake, Janie was forced to acknowledge where she stood as a female in her relationship. While Logan Killicks gives her no opportunity of expressing herself, Jody overpowers her expressive voice; Tea Cake allows her construction of self to mature link between self construction and cognition. As she expected, the residents gossip about her when she arrives back in town. New York: Infobase Publishing, 2009, p. As Janie finishes sharing her story with Pheoby, who is in awe at what her friend has endured, she returns to her room and feels an overwhelming sense of calm come over her. Through indiscriminate suffering men know fear and fear is the most divine emotion. New York: Free Press, 2000.
Dust Tracks on a Road: An Autobiography. They sat in company with the others in the shanties, their eyes straining against crude walls and their souls asking if He meant to measure their puny might against His. Their Eyes Were Watching God. The 1977 biography was followed in 1978 by the re-issue of Their Eyes Were Watching God. Bloom's Guides - Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God. He appears to genuinely understand Janie, and cares for her deeply.