Preview
Preview

Essay on Men in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God

:: 8 Works Cited
Length: 2713 words (7.8 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Blue      
Open Document




- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Men in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God


Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God tells the story of how a young woman, Janie, finds her place and identity in life. Deborah Clarke argues that slavery in this novel forces women to fade into the background, losing their identity and definition of self. Many critics, like Clarke, look at this work focusing on the development of a self-identity from a woman's perspective, completely ignoring the plight and journey of the men in the novel. While Logan Killicks, Joe "Jody" Starks, and Vergible "Tea Cake" Woods all play roles in Janie's development, they also deal with their own struggles. Each of the men in her life comes to hold a different form of truth for Janie. Each one brings new life and information into Janie's life, finding their own voice through her in the process. With their own growth and development of a voice at times, the men in Janie's life begin to silence her temporarily in order to assert their individual machismo. Just as Janie struggles to define herself, the male characters also face the task of determining what makes a man a man. Unlike Janie, they fail.

Janie's first marriage to Logan Killicks represents the "foolish marriage of an old man and a young girl" (Ferguson 185). Janie views this union as a way for her to be safe and secure from the dangers of the world that Nanny warns her about. Logan looks at Janie as another pair of hands to help work on the land. Logan Killicks maintains the slave mentality of the past about the value of hard work and the ownership of land. He believes that a man's hard work and dedication to his land form his identity. Logan Killicks, a very practical man, does not put any emphasis o...


... middle of paper ...


...owth in Their Eyes Were Watching God." Black American Literature Forum 12.1-2 (1987): 185-197.

Hubbard, Dolan. " . .Ah Said Ah's Save de Text for You': Recontextualizing the Sermon to Tell (Her) Story in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God." African American Review 27.2 (1993): 167-178.

Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God. New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. , 1998

McGowan, Todd. "Liberation and Domination: Their Eyes Were Watching God and the Evolution of Capitalism." MELUS 24.1 (1999): 109-123.

Racine, Maria J. " Voice and Interiority in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God." African American Review 28.2 (1994): 283-293.

Simmons, Ryan. "The Hierarchy Itself': Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God and the Sacrifice of Narrative Authority." African American Review 36.2 (2002): 181-194.


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
The Men of Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston Essays - The Men of Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston      In Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, the reader is given a particular glimpse into Janie's life with reference to the men she has known.  Janie's three men are all very different, yet they were all Janie's husband at one point in her life.  Although they all behaved differently, in lifestyle as well as their relationship with Janie, they all shared certain similarities.                Janie's first husband was a poor old soul named Logan Killicks.  He was an ugly, dirty farmer whose prime concern for Janie was that she do her share of the work in order to keep the farm up and running.  Janie was simp...   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays Hurston]
:: 3 Works Cited
965 words
(2.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Janie and Contemporary Women in Zora Neale Hurston’s "Their Eyes Were Watching God" - The character Janie in Zora Neale Hurston’s novel Their Eyes Were Watching God is portrayed as a woman who has a modern mindset that is much too advanced for her thinking. Janie does things that raise much controversy with the community and endures situations that would be deemed inhumane in today’s society. Examining the abuse, oppression and criticism Janie undergoes in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God from both a contemporary woman's viewpoint and an early twentieth century woman's viewpoint reveals differences, as well as similarities in the way people respond to events....   [tags: Zora Neale Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God, ]
:: 2 Works Cited
718 words
(2.1 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Belief in Freedom in Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston - In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, discussed the existence of freedom in life and overcoming the challenges that comes with it. Firstly, she used the differentiation between the two races. Secondly gender sexuality between the males and females. Thirdly, slavery of African- American suffered while and after the civil war from the whites. After is the history of Eatonville, Florida and the changes it had on the world. Next, is the culture and tradition the African-American had and practiced and its effect on the world....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God]
:: 6 Works Cited
3104 words
(8.9 pages)
Research Papers [preview]
Mythology in Zora Neale Hurston's "Their Eyes Were Watching God" Essay - Mythology is a key part of many of Zora Neale Hurston’s short stories and novels. She researched the stories of her home town and many other areas of the world. Hurston used this knowledge of myths and stories to help her carry them on to later generations in a form that almost everybody could relate to. Through out all of Zora Neale Hurston’s stories, mythology has been a crucial keystone. Her novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, has been influenced by three different ancient myths: the myths of Ezili Freda, Osiris and Isis, and Aphrodite and Adonis....   [tags: Zora Neale Hurston, mythology, Their Eyes Were Wat] 1021 words
(2.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Free Essays - Doing the Right Thing in Their Eyes Were Watching God - Doing the Right Thing in Their Eyes Were Watching God When faced with urgent moral conflicts such as during the hurricane in Zora Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God, men generally have two choices: help others or help themselves. Hurston's characters choose to they help others before attending to their own needs for survival. The characters' actions are typical of Immanuel Kant's philosophy of the categorical imperative: actions are intrinsically good and do not find justification in their effects, nor does one expect compensation for his actions....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays] 751 words
(2.1 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Love in Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston Essays - Love is different for each and every person. For some, it comes easy and happens early in life. For others, such as Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, it happened much later in life after two unsuccessful marriages. Janie’s grandmother, Nanny raised Janie to be attracted to financial security and physical protection instead of seeking love. Nanny continually emphasized that love was something that was bound to happen after those needs were met; even though Nanny never married....   [tags: Their Eyes Watching God Hurston] 1663 words
(4.8 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Essay on Dependency in Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston - Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God describes the life of Janie, a black woman at the turn of the century. Janie is raised by her Grandmother and spends her life traveling with different men until she finally returnes home. Robert E. Hemenway has said about the book, “Their Eyes Were Watching God is ... one of the most revealing treatments in modern literature of a woman’s quest for a satisfying life” I partially disagree with Hemenway because, although Janie is on a quest, it is not for a satisfying life....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays] 632 words
(1.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay - How Men Changed Janie For The Better In Zora Neale Hurston’s, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie Crawford, the heroine of the novel is the first Black female character in African American fiction to embark on a journey of self discovery and achieve independence and self understanding (Novels For Students 303). She enters several marriages with many thoughts but of them all, she has universal expectations for each, those expectations are that she will be treated with the utmost respect and if it isn’t present at the beginning, "love will come" no matter what....   [tags: Zora Neale Hurston] 1563 words
(4.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Janie’s Growth in Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston Essay - Janie’s Growth in Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston   In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, Janie has allowed us to better understand the restraints that women in society had to deal with in a male dominated society. Her marriage with Logan Killicks consisted of dull, daily routines.  Wedding herself to Joe Starks brought her closer to others, than to herself.  In her final marriage to Vergible Woods, also known as Tea Cake, she finally learned how to live her life on her own.  In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Janie suffered through many difficult situations that eventually enabled her to grow into an independent person....   [tags: Eyes Watching God Essays Hurston Papers]
:: 3 Works Cited
1341 words
(3.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Love in Their Eyes Were Watching God - Love in Their Eyes Were Watching God Love plays a very important role in Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes were watching God. Janie spent her days looking for love. She thought of love just as she thought of the elements of springtime: Sunny days, bright skies, a bee pollinating pear tree blossoms. She searched far and wide for this kind of perfect love. Logan Killicks couldn't give this kind of love to Janie. He may not have loved her at all. To him, Janie was just another working set of hands....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays] 639 words
(1.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]