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"Their Eyes Were Watching God" By Zora Neele Hurston.

994 words - 4 pages

The Crux of Their Eyes Were Watching God"Love does not begin and end the way we seem to think it does. Love is a battle, love is a war; love is a growing up." -James Baldwin.In the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, a strong woman character told a story that I'm sure means a lot to women all over the world. Hers was a story about love and finding some meaning in her life. Throughout it, Janie, an African-American woman living in the early 20th Century, goes through trying experiences that can only make her more aware of what life entails. It's hard to say what specific event built more character in Janie's life than anything else, but, in my opinion, I have found something that comes close. I believe the time Janie stands up to her husband, Joe Starks, is the time that Janie learns how to speak her mind. She learns who she wants to be and realizes what she does and does not want in her life.In this scene, Janie (for the first time) tells Joe, or Jody as she used to call him, how he never really knew her. She told him that he took so much pride in his own doings that he didn't notice anything else around him. In the scene where Janie is finally letting loose, she tells him how she isn't satisfied with who she is. Did that mean she had ever changed or would have ever changed for him? No! She is able to tell him that, throughout his structured ways, she is able to hold onto what she really wants to be like. "Ah ain't gointuh hush." she said. (Pg. 86) Her sudden outburst is a change in Janie we have never seen before. Joe wants her to be subordinate to him; a picture-perfect wife that fit the image he wanted to portray for himself. Joe eventually gets his way and that's just the way it is. He grows more and more stubborn, unlike the man Janie had thought she'd married. Janie is finally able to stand up to Jody and tell him what she really thinks about his policies for her, something she had never really had the nerve to do before.We also see Janie start to become the women she wants to be. When she talks to Jody in this scene, she mentions that he isn't the Jody she'd "run off down de road wid." (Pg. 86). In fact, the Jody she had known had told her he wanted to make a wife out of her; that he'd be a "big ruler of things with her reaping the benefits." (Pg. 29). Perhaps this is what Jody thought he had done. However, as Janie tells him, they certainly had different definitions of "wife". He never allowed Janie to be the loving, caring wife and human she wanted to be. For example, when the mule died and...

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