This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Janie: Victim Of Male Dominating Society In Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston

657 words - 3 pages

Mary Helen Washington’s essay denies Hurston’s effort to create a liberated female

character in Their Eyes Were Watching God. Washington believes that Janie is actually

excluded “from power, particularly from the power of oral speech”. Janie plays a role of

an object for men to look at and talk about. The consequence of this oppression is shown

after Jody’s death, rather than declaring her freedom, Janie appreciates her own hair by

looking at the mirror just like other men in the town. She is banned from taking part in

the porch talk, so she hides her voice. Even when she speaks, her voice does not lead to

power, action nor contentment, but self-division. Washington disagrees with Barbara

Johnson’s opinion that Janie’s self-division leads to her discovery of her own voice.

When it seems that Janie can finally speak of her own mind while living with Tea Cake,

Tea Cake becomes the ...view middle of the document...

After Janie’s marriage

with Logan, she gradually finds that “her husband had stopped talking in rhymes to

her”(P26). Furthermore, the next day after her wedding with Jody, “ Joe didn’t make

any speeches with rhymes to her”(P34). Janie’s feeling depends on her husbands’ words

rather than herself. For her, men’s voices have great influence on her. She desires to hear

commentaries from the men but fails to consider own thoughts. In addition, once after

Jody’s speech to the town people, one suggests letting Janie say something. Jody refuses

before Janie can respond. “Janie made her face laugh after a short pause, but it wasn’t too

easy”(P43). Though she is not happy about this and wants to get a chance to speak, she

does not do anything but remains silence and keeps her thoughts to herself. Even though

Janie seems to begin to speak of her own mind after Tea Cake comes into her life, her

voice is constantly drown out by Tea Cake’s. In the case when Tea Cake spends all her

money on a magnificent feast, Janie shows her anger. However, Tea Cake claims that

he does not want to drag Janie down to other women’s level and promises to win the

money back. Janie is content and does not speak. She gives up the chance to show her

power vocally under the oppression of Tea Cake’s speech. Later, Janie sees Tea Cake

becomes intimate with another girl without telling her; she gets mad and argues with him.

However, by the end of their argument, Janie says “she wanted to hear his denial” (P138).

She believes in Tea Cake even she sees that by herself. She neglects the truth and is

willing to follow Tea Cake’s words blindly. The emphasis on the power of men’s speech

makes Janie a character with little oral strength. Ironically, Hurston makes Tea Cake the

person who can speak his feelings rather than Janie. Tea Cake speaks about his loneness

at work and successfully persuades Janie to find a job with him. He changes Janie’s mind

and consequently controls her will and voice completely. Janie is a victim of the male

dominating society, and a passive role in all the conversations.

Find Another Essay On Janie: Victim of Male Dominating Society in Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

1275 words - 5 pages In Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston basically follows Janie for her whole life. Hurston, in the beginning of the book, said that women “forget all those things they don’t want to remember, and remember everything they want to forget. The dream is the truth. Then they act and do things accordingly.” As Huston said, by the time Jane returns to Eatonville, Janie has discovered herself through her relationships with Logan

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

1279 words - 5 pages Tea Cake died Janie knew it is time for her to head back home. Once she arrived so proclaimed, "So Ah'm back home agin and Ah'm satisfied tuh be heah. Ah done been tuh de horizon and back and now Ah kin set heah in mah house and live by comparisons” (191). In Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, Zora shows that in each relationship of Janie’s there are many symbols present that help Janie direct her way through her life with all

Overview: Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

2131 words - 9 pages Their Eyes Were Watching God was written by Zora Neale Hurston and published in 1937. Hurston's book guides us through character Janie Crawford’s hectic journey while taking place in the 1900s. The story starts out with Janie, a middle-aged African American woman, returning to her hometown in Eatonville, Florida. Her surprise visit gets the town talking. They wonder where she had gone, what she was doing, and why she was gone so long. Janie’s

Their Eyes Were Watching God, Written by Zora Neale Hurston

1785 words - 7 pages Their Eyes Were Watching God, written by Zora Neale Hurston, is a novel about Janie Crawford, a “light” african american woman living in the 1930’s. Janie’s life is chronicled as she tells her friend her story: a pear tree, a dead mule, three marriages, and a hurricane later the reader and the listener, Phoeby, feels they had “‘done growed ten feet higher from jus’ listenin’’” (192) to her story. However, overall Hurston wants the reader to

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

2022 words - 8 pages Their Eyes Were Watching God.” Approaches to Teaching Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God and Other Works. Ed. John Lowe. New York: The MLA of America, 2009. 27-36. Print. Wright, Richard. “Between Laughter and Tears.” Rev. of Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston. New Masses. 5 Oct. 1937: 22+. Rpt. In Cronin 75-76. Rpt. Gates and Appiah 16-17.

Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston

890 words - 4 pages The differences of the human race are unfathomable; Therefore, it goes without saying that arguments will arise, how we handle these situations reveals our character. The physical abuse implored on Janie in Zora Neale Hurston's novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, reveals true aspects of gender roles and marital relationships in the twentieth century. Hurston shows no hesitation when broaching such topics; I presume this is because of the

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston - 1518 words

1518 words - 6 pages hate and control left her stronger than before, preparing her for the next challenges thrown at her. In Their Eyes Were Watching God, the deaths' of close relatives and family positively affect Janie because she tends to become more educated and wiser with each death she overcomes in the obstacles she calls her life. In Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie is positively affected by Joe Stark's death because she finally feels free of all control

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

614 words - 2 pages can see, Tea Cake's traits played an important role in his marriage with Janie. His loyalty and immaturity isolated Tea Cake from ever other man. From teaching Janie to fish to saving her life and from spending her money and not going to the hospital Janie experienced many things from this man. Unlike her marriage with Logan Killicks and Joe Starks, her marriage with Tea Cake was like a trip to the horizon.BiblIographyHurston, Zora Neale., and Jerry Pinkney. Their Eyes Were Watching God. Urbana: University of Illinois, 1991. Print.

Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston

1139 words - 5 pages Explained Styles & Tones Of Their Eyes Were Watching God “Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board.” (pg.1, par.1) and so begins the powerful story of Janie Crawford, along with the author’s menagerie of different styles and tones. These tones and styles set the stage for Zora Neale Hurston’s major themes, all of which were strongly introduced and defended throughout the novel. Hurston’s themes vary from sexism, to dialogue, and to

Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston - 1863 words

1863 words - 7 pages In Zora Neale Hurston’s novel, Their eyes were watching God the main character Janie is on a quest for self-fulfillment. Of Janie’s three marriages, Logan and Joe provide her with a sense of security and status. However, only her union with Teacake flourishes into true love. Janie’s first marriage to Logan Killicks was an arranged marriage by her Grandmother Nanny. One day Nanny caught Janie kissing the neighborhood riff raff Johnny Taylor, and

"Their Eyes Were Watching God" by Zora Neale Hurston

1009 words - 4 pages In "Their Eyes Were Watching God," Janie the protagonist of the novel battles to find herself and her true love. All her life she had been pushed around and told what to do and how to live her life. She searched high and low to find a peace that would make her whole and make her feel like a complete person. During that time, men were looked to as the superior being, where women were supposed to look up to and serve. It was very hard for Janie

Similar Essays

The Characterization Of Janie In Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston

780 words - 3 pages In the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston which is set in the 1930’s explores the life of an African American women from the south, that trying to find herself. The protagonist of this novel is Janie Crawford. In the novel, Janie is going on a journey to find who she really is and to find spiritual enlightenment. To help shape Janie character in this novel Hurston is influence by the philosophical view from the Romanticism

Janie In Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston

1206 words - 5 pages . Triumphalism has itself been located within a dubious rhetoric of status (Newman, Oct., 2003). Work Cited "Dis ain't Gimme, Florida": Zora Neale Hurston's "Their Eyes Were Watching God" Author(s): Judie Newman Source: The Modern Language Review, Vol. 98, No. 4 (Oct., 2003), pp. 817-826 Published by: Modern Humanities Research AssociationStable URL: .Accessed: 21/04/2014 10:27Your Shmoop Editorial Team. "Janie Crawford in Their Eyes Were Watching God" Shmoop University, Inc. 11 November 2008. (accessed April 21, 2014).

Janie In Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston

745 words - 3 pages would eventually appear in their marriage and she " felt glad of the thought, for then it wouldn't seem so destructive and mouldy " (Hurston 21). Although Janie had high hopes of falling in love, they did not. 2) The relationship between Logan and Janie at first starts with hope, but then ends with anger. In the first year of their marriage, Logan fills Janie with security, and does anything in his power to make sure she is filled with

Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston 1290 Words

1290 words - 5 pages killing the final strand of her dependence on men. It represented Janie finally finding her independence and liberation from male oppression. One of the underlying themes Zora Neale Hurston put in her book, Their Eyes Were Watching God was feminism. Hurston used each of Janie’s three marriages to represent Janie moving closer to her liberation and freedom from male dominance. She finally found her liberation and became truly independent after