Power Of Speech

1660 words - 7 pages

Speech is a very powerful tool that can inform our minds, caress and comfort our feelings, excite and thrill our spirit, or warm and kindle the flame of our hearts. Speech can also slap our face, punch us in the stomach, rattle our nerves, kill our desire, or destroy our self-confidence. Speech is a very important to have. In fact, it is so important that our founding fathers made it the first amendment of the United States Constitution. In the novel, “Their Eyes Were Watching God” the role of speech changes as you advance through the story; it is used as both ways to control someone as well as a vehicle of liberation.
Jody Sparks controlled Janie using various tactics: One of the tactics Jody Sparks used to control Janie was by silencing her voice. At the beginning of their marriage, Janie was optimistic about her new life with Jody. Then slowly she began to see the type of person Jody is. Jody is a manipulative man that wants everything his way. For Jody, Janie is more of a trophy than a wife. You first see Jody’s need to control Janie when Jody was elected Mayor, Taylor asks Janie to give a short speech. Jody prevents from speaking, saying that wives should not make speeches. This angers Janie, but she remains does not say anything. In this marriage, control is associated with language and speech. In addition, if Jody allowed Janie to speak would be to allow her to assert her identity in her own words and be her own person. Jody changed as soon as they got married. He no longer tried win her affection and began to boss her around. He made her run the store and several other jobs. Janie believed that “She was there in the store for him to look at…” (Hurston 52). Another way that Jody controls her was by making her hide her beautiful hair in a rag. Jody did not want anyone looking at what was his possession. Jody refuses to let Janie interact with the local people on the porch by saying that she is too good to interact with “trashy people.” This was she cannot join the conversations that take place in the porch and speak out her opinions on certain subjects. Jody would rather keep up the appearance of his wife as a perfect woman than indulge her emotions. Jody does not care about her emotions, dreams, or desires. He simply wants to keep her silent in order to keep up the appearance of a perfect marriage. Jody’s behavior and actions toward Janie make her “bury” her dreams and desires that she soon forgets about them.
Everybody needs a way to express themselves but for Janie her husband Jody never lets Janie speak her mind. She soon succumbs to his will. On the outside, she submitted to him but on the inside, she was resilient as ever. She feels like running away but believes she is to old. Whenever she makes an understandable mistake, he does not forgive her, instead Jody just yells at her for the simplest mistake. Instead of fighting back and defending herself, Janie remains silent. Another example of Jody’s controlling nature is when one day...

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