Jamie's Quest in Their Eyes Were Watching God

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One of the most prevalent themes in, "Their eyes were watching God" is Jamie’s undivided quest for love and independence. Jamie has a goal throughout the novel to find spiritual enlightenment and reach the "horizon". She went through several relationships and chimerical thoughts to do this, through her grandmother nanny and her three husbands. However, her third husband, tea cake plays a less substantial role in the novel but a significant role in Jamie quest to reach her dream of love, independency and security within herself.

In the beginning of the book, Hurston foreshadows the issue of Jamie’s quest for love. She was stretched on her back beneath the pear tree soaking in the alto chant of the visiting bees, the gold of the sun and the panting breath of the breeze and the inaudible voice of it all came to her. She was a dust bearing bee sink into the sanctum of a bloom; the thousand sister-calyxes arch to meet the love embrace and the ecstatic shiver of the tree from root to the tiniest branch and creaming in every blossom and frothing with delight. So this was marriage! (pg. 11). Hurston is foreshadowing the central issue of her novel; Jamie’s quest to reach her horizon. The unification of the bee and flower is the fulfillment and reflection of love that Jamie desires through her give and take love relationships throughout the novel.

In Jamie’s begging quest for love she meets her first husband Logan, in which she is tricked in to the illusion of love by her nanny. “Cause you told me Ah mus gointer love him, and, and Ah don’t Maybe if somebody was to tell me how, Ah could do it” (pg. 23). Jamie realizes that nanny portrayed love as money and respect, but Janie wanted both emotional and physical love in which Logan couldn’t provide. Jamie starts meeting a man named Joe Starks who she is an essential alteration in her loveless marriage. “ Every day after that they managed to meet in the scrub oaks across the road and talk about when he would be a big ruler of things with her reaping the benefits. Janie pulled back a long time because he did not represent sun-up and pollen and blooming trees, but he spoke for far horizon” ( pg. 29). I Janie’s eyes Joe could be her horizon that she is searching for.
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