Janie's Quest in Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

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Finding one’s soul mate is a difficult and lengthy process for most, as it is for Janie in the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston. She marries Logan Killicks, Joe Starks, and Tea Cake Woods who seem to be alike; however, the motives for the actions they each take are completely different. All three husbands are similar in the way that they all have expectations of Janie as a wife. Logan Killicks, Janies first husband, has expectations of Janie. His motives for his expectations though, are because he wants her to help out on the farm. Logan shows this expectation by saying, “ Naw Ah needs two mules dis yeah. Taters is goin’ tuh be taters in de fall. Bringin’ big prices. Ah aims tuh run two plows, and dis man Ah’m…show more content…
Another way all three husbands are similar is when they abuse her. Logan is motivated by his pure dislike of Janie. At first he did love her, but a month or so after he began to treat Janie like a labor slave and tries to threaten her and make her miserable. An example is when he says, Don’t you change too many words wid me dis mawnin’, Janie, do Ah’ll take and change ends wid yuh! Heah, Ah just as good as take you out de white folks’ kitchen and set you down on yo’ royal diasticutis and you take and low-rate me! Ah’ll take holt uh dat ax and come in dere and kill yuh! You better dry up in dere! Ah’m too honest and hard-workin’ for anybody in yo’ family, dat’s de reason you don’t want me!” (25). He shows no real feelings toward her and somewhat loathes her. Similarly, Joe Starks abuses Janie as well, but he does so for control over her. Joe feels very threatened and pride deprived when Janie makes him feel like less of a man and so, fights her until she submits to him and he feels satisfied. He relates her all the women in the world and children to animals, and like in this quote states, “ So when the bread didn’t rise, and the fish wasn’t quite done at the bone, and the rice was scorched, he slapped Janie until she had a ringing in her ears and told her about her brains before he stalked on back to the store” (57-58). That is how bad he desires control he will fight with her over anything, even a poorly cooked meal. Tea Cake, also, abuses Janie. The way
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