Essay on Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God

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The Charater of Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God

In Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie Crawford is the heroine. She helps women to deal with their own problems by dealing with hers. She deals with personal relationships as well as searches for self-awareness. Janie Crawford is more than a heroine, however, she is a woman who has overcome the restrictions placed on her by the oppressive forces and people in her life.

As a young woman, Janie had no complaints about her role in society and fit in as most young people do. Eventually, Janie made it her purpose to outgrow this mold, defying her societal role and fulfilling her dream of becoming the assertive woman she always wanted to be. To
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Janie's quest is for self-discovery and self-definition, but she encounters many obstacles while trying to win this quest.

Janie is a black woman who asserts herself beyond expectation. She has a persistence that characterizes her search for the love that she dreamed of since she was a girl. Janie understands the societal status that her life has handed her, yet she is determined to overcome this, and she is resentful toward anyone or anything that interferes with her quest for happiness. "So de white man throw down de load and tell de nigger man tuh pick it up. He pick it up because he have to, but he don't tote it. He hand it to his womenfolks. De nigger woman is de mule uh de world so fur as Ah can see, "(Page 14) laments Janie's grandmother as she tried to justify the marriage that she has arranged for her granddaughter with Logan Killicks. This paragraph establishes the existence of the inferior status of women in Janie's society, a status which Janie must somehow overcome in order to emerge a heroine in the end of the novel.

Janie refuses to let this societal constraint deter her from her dream. "She knew now that marriage did not make love. Janie's first dream was dead, so she became a woman" (Page 24). Janie has acknowledged that at that point in time, her dream was
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