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

Essay On Their Eyes Were Watching God

606 words - 3 pages

Body and Power in Their Eyes Were Watching God
Zora Neale Hurson’s masterpiece Their Eyes Were Watching God is the first literary work that fully demonstrates a black woman’s process of “Awakening” and serves as a milestone of female imagery creation in black literature. This novel sucessfully depicts a new woman image that tries to break from white-dominated and male-dominated society and pursue her own identity and freedom. This essay focuses on the discription about the main character’s physical appearance, or her body, and tries to reveal a new perspective on understanding this novel.
Body, especially female body, has long been deciphered into a mark, a signifier that equivalents to power. Women exchange their bodies for material gains and men consider women bodies as possessions and embediment of power. The heroine in Zora’s book, experienced a ...view middle of the document...

Her first marriage was arranged by her grandmother, who wanted to settle Janie in a secured position. Her husband Logan Killicks, owner of sixty acres of farm, married Janie for her beauty. Their marriage was like a trade---body for security and wealth. This loveless marriage striffled Janie and made her elopement with Jody Starks, who Janie thought would bring love into their marriage.
Jody Starks turned out to be far from satisfactory. He didn’t allow Janie to expose her hair in the public and became real mad when Amos Hicks tried to touch her hair. Jody viewed Janie as his private possessions and therefore felt insulted when other men tried to get close to Janie. He even ordered Janie to braid her hair. The braid was constantly described in phallic terms and functions as a symbol of a typically masculine power and potency. With year went by, Janie remained young and beautiful while Jody “wasn’t so young as he used to be[2]”. This sharp contrast in body appearance made Jody sad and angry. He became more suspicious about Janie’s dealing with other men, which forced a verbal retaliation out of Janie just before his death. Her somewhat cruel treatment at the dying Jody measured the depth of Jody’s suppression of her inner life.
Janie’s third marriage proved successful. Tea Cake, her third husband, functioned as the catalyst that helpd drive Janie toward her freedom. He never put a limitation on the clothes Janie should wear. He helped to develop Janie’s physical strenthen by teaching her how to fish, gamble and shoot. Instead of strifling her personality, he encouraged it and helped her to better understand herself by introducing new experiences and skills. His action proved him to be the soul-mate for Janie.
Franch feminist Helene Cixous once said female writers should write about their bodies, which may become a effective tool against phallus-centerism. Zora here, sets a good example.

-----------------------
[1] P2
[2] P77

Other Essays Like Essay on Their Eyes Were Watching God

Love in "Their Eyes Were Watching God"

800 words - 4 pages Love plays a very important role in Zora Neale Hurston's “Their Eyes were watching God.” This is a statement that Bertrand Russell agrees with in her quote, “To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life are already three parts dead.” Love is the essence of life and everybody has the obligation to find their one true love or they haven’t lived their life. In the novel, Janie spent her days looking for love. She thought of

Perceptions Of Marriage In Their Eyes Were Watching God

997 words - 4 pages grandmother and then married off by her grandmother. Originally all Janie knows of marriage and love is what her grandmother tells her.  As Janie moves on in her life and re-marries, she finds that everybody has their own idea towards the role of their spouses in marriage. Over time Janie begins to develop her own ideas and ideals.  In Their Eyes Were Watching God each principle character has their own perceptions towards marriage. &nbsp

Taking A Chance In Hurston’S Novels, Their Eyes Were Watching God And Seraph On The Suwanee

570 words - 3 pages Taking a Chance in Hurston’s Novels, Their Eyes Were Watching God and Seraph on the Suwanee “‘All right then, you name somethin’ and we’ll do it. We kin give it uh poor man’s trial anyhow.’” “‘Anyhow Ah done got rested up and de bed bugs is done got too bold round heah. Ah didn’t notice when mah rest wuz broke. Ah’m goin’ out and look around and see whut we kin do. Ah’ll give anything uh common trial.’” pp. 168-69; Their Eyes Were Watching

Their Eyes Were Wathiching God

564 words - 3 pages Their Eyes Were Watching God            Their Eyes Were Watching God is a story about the life of Janie Crawford and the hardships and triumphs in her three marriages, though there were many more hardships. In this essay I will share with you the setting, some characters, incidents from the plot, the theme, and point of view.      This story begins in the 1930's when

Summer Reading Response To "Their Eyes Were Watching God" By Hurston, Zora Neale

893 words - 4 pages Their Eyes Were Watching God1.Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God. New York, New York: J.B. Lippincott Inc., Ã" 1990.2A.The main theme of Their Eyes Were Watching God is segregation of colors. There were a variety of situations in which the Caucasians were separated from the African Americans. For instance, in the start of the story, Janie begins to tell her life to Pheoby with her childhood. When she was a little girl, she

The Question Of Pure Optimism In Their Eyes Were Watching God

1225 words - 5 pages The Question of Pure Optimism in Their Eyes Were Watching God In Their Eyes Were Watching God Janie goes through several relationships before "[s]he pulled in her horizon like a great fish net. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder" (p. 184). In other words, not all the experiences that helped her to gain control of her life were positive ones. These experiences can be put into one of four

The Role Of Trees In Hurston’S Seraph On The Suwanee And Their Eyes Were Watching

665 words - 3 pages The Role of Trees in Hurston’s Seraph on the Suwanee and Their Eyes Were Watching God Trees play integral roles in Seraph on the Suwanee and Their Eyes Were Watching God as sites of sexual awakening for Hurston’s heroines, providing a space under which dreams bloom into “glistening leaf-buds” or over-ripen and die like spoiled fruit. Close readings of Janie’s pear tree and Arvay’s mulberry evoke strikingly disparate images of female

On How The American Indians Were Removed From Their Land

2314 words - 10 pages forefathers to a new territory in Oklahoma. Traveling with thirteen groups of about one thousand people in each group, which started their journey in the autumn of 1838 and the journey ended in the winter of the next year. Through their struggles, the Indians faced many problems; not only along the way, but also when they got to the new land. Many Indians were killed on the journey, some from disease, hunger, and dehydration. Families were separated

Essay On The Holy Bible - The Nature Of God In The Genesis

1122 words - 5 pages The Nature of God in the Genesis   Genesis is the first book of the Bible.  It begins with the story of God’s creation of the universe.    The Lord is the Almighty Creator of the world, skies, heavens, seas, animals, man, and woman.  He governs the universe and develops relationships with man.  Throughout Genesis, God acknowledges the fact that human beings make mistakes, and accepts their imperfection.  Throughout Genesis, God changes

This Is A Soc. Essay About The Effects Of Tv Violence On Young Children Adn Their Development

1136 words - 5 pages Television ViolenceSitting in school, little Kayla sits anxiously watching the clock. The teacher is talking to the class, but Kayla just can't wait to get home. When the bell finally rings, she runs out of the classroom, and all the way home. After blasting in the house, she runs to turn on the TV. Having nothing more exciting to do, Kayla will sit in front of the television until her mom pulls her away for dinner. This is an all to familiar

The Search For Nora Zeale Hurston

1320 words - 6 pages Zora Neale Hurston grew up in poverty, lived her life in infamy, and died in obscurity. Her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God dropped off the face of the Earth because of negative and damaging criticism from Richard Wright and Alain Locke, and the fact that she was a black woman in a discriminating culture. It then resurfaced 30 years later due to fans and the movements of the civil rights, woman’s rights, and Black Arts. Zora

Related Papers

Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

312 words - 2 pages Nick Wong3rd period12/11/13The book is always betterThe book Their Eyes Were Watching God had many more details and had a more "classic" than the movie version. I thought the book was better because it felt linger and there was more action and suspense. For instance, the movie skips all three of Janie's marriages. The movie also skipped the scene where Joe bought the mule. The movie changed a lot of parts and cut out a lot of things.The book had

Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

1270 words - 6 pages Leo Rosten once said, "Money can't buy happiness." Janie from Zora Neale Hurston's, Their Eyes Were Watching God, would agree with this famous quote. Janie's first husband is financially stable and her second husband is powerful; but it is with her third marriage where she finally experiences happiness and receives respect. Through the first two marriages, we see how worldly desires and pride can ruin a relationship. Ultimately, Hurston portrays

Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

5977 words - 24 pages on its back, she reaches for the cows tail to stay safe. The dog then attacks and Tea Cake jumps in to kill the dog by stabbing it after he was bit. They both make it to Palm Beach safely. Imagery- “They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God (160).” -They were praying to God to give them a chance to live in the darkness of the night. Figurative Language- Personification: “It woke up old Okechobee and the monster

Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

1356 words - 6 pages . Janie's first dream was dead, so she became a woman- (44). With Killicks, Janie also learns more about the power associated with names. When they argue about her doing outside work in their yard, she calls him "'Mist' Killicks,'" a name which ironically reflects his attempt to be her master. He, on the other hand, calls her "'LilBit,'" a name which reveals her position of powerlessness in his mind. Logan Killicks finally goes too far when he