Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

724 WordsNov 4, 20113 Pages
THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD ESSAY ¬¬ Janie Crawford is surrounded by outward influences that contradict her independence and personal development. These outward influences from society, her grandma, and even significant others contribute to her curiosity. Tension builds between outward conformity and inward questioning, allowing Zora Neal Hurston to illustrate the challenge of choice and accountability that Janie faces throughout the novel. Janie’s Grandma plays an important outward influence from the very beginning. Her perspective on life was based off of her experience as a slave. “Ah was born back due in slavery so it wasn’t for me to fulfill my dreams of whut a woman oughta be and to do.” (16) She felt that financial security,…show more content…
Kind of portly like rich white folks.”(35) He became less like a Husband, and more like a respected authority. It was discovered that Joe’s intentions with Janie had been wrongly accused. He began to treat her more like an object rather than his loving wife as their marriage deteriorated. His priorities were clear and Janie was not one of them. Joe’s charming personality convinced Janie to conform outwardly, yet in the end she was left questioning inwardly once again. Even before Joe’s death, Janie “was saving up feelings for some man she had never seen. She had an inside and an outside now and suddenly she knew not how to mix them.”(75) Joe’s influences controlled Janie to the point where she lost her independence and hope. She no longer knew how to adapt to the change brought upon her. When she finally settles and begins to gain back that independence, the outward existence of society came back into play. “Uh woman by herself is uh pitiful thing. Dey needs aid and assistance.”(90) Except this time Janie acted upon her own judgment and fell for someone out of the ordinary. Tea Cake was a refreshing change for Janie, despite the society’s disapproval. “Janie looked down on him and felt a self-crushing love. So her soul crawled out from its hiding place.”(128) This was what she had always dreamt of. When she was with Tea Cake, she no longer questioned inwardly, she simply rejected society’s opinions and acted upon her own desires. Throughout the novel Janie makes

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