Their Eyes Were Watching God “He set it up and began to show her and she found herself glowing inside.” Page 95 She was glowing because she was getting the kind of attention she always dreamed of. When her first marriage to Logan Killicks ended, she was looking for that natural love. The kind of love that was present before marriage. Love that was the reason for the marriage, not the product of it afterwards. Her next marriage to Jody was an escape. In a sense it was Janie breaking free from the life that Nanny had planned for her, cutting loose from his scratchy toenails and portly stomach. Joe Starks was the knight who could rescue that damsel in distress. However, Tea Cakes started off with a “sweep you off of you feet” type meeting, which could not be turned down. He possessed charm and grace and had this unique ability to make Janie feel special. “Yuh can’t beat uh woman” Page 96 I like this line. It is so playful and flattering, and in my opinion…TRUE. Tea Cakes knows a little some thing about woman. He does not see them as trophies to be put on the mantle nor assets in a marriage or love affair. Women are complex human beings who should never be underestimated, especially if they have been suppresses as long as Janie has. “Who ever heard of uh teacake bein’ called Mister! If you wanta be real high toned and call me Mr. Woods, dat’s de way you feel about it. If yuh wants to be uh lil friendly and call me Tea Cakes, dat would be real nice.” He was closing and bolting windows all the time he talked.” Page 98 To be perfectly honest I am a little scared for Janie. Tea Cakes is acting like a perfect gentleman, helping her close up the store. But what if he turns out like both Logan and Jody. They both started treating her out all nice but then each marriage progressive took a downward slide. They both were abusive and both ignored her thoughts and feelings as a woman. I, like Janie, am jaded and hold a few skepticisms. She of course is aware of the apparent age difference, she 40 and Tea Cakes 25. However at times she seems too caught up in love that she must remind herself every so often what she is dealing with here. “So she sat on the porch and watched the moon rise.
All three husbands are similar in the way that they all have expectations of Janie as a wife. Logan Killicks, Janies first husband, has expectations of Janie. His motives for his expectations though, are because he wants her to help out on the farm. Logan shows this expectation by saying, “ Naw Ah needs two mules dis yeah. Taters is goin’ tuh be taters in de fall. Bringin’ big prices. Ah aims tuh run two plows, and dis man Ah’m talkin’ ‘bout is got uh mule all gentled up so even uh woman kin handle ‘im” (21). He has the idea that Janie can work with him, Logan makes her carry wood to the house, cut seeds from potatoes, and even move piles of manure. In the same way, Joe Starks expects much from Janie as well. He is motivated by improving his image however, by making Janie Mrs. Mayor Starks she is now Joe’s eye candy. His vision for being a big voice is mainly in Janie’s perfect looks, like in this quote that states, “ Everybody was coming sort of fixed up, and he didn’t mean for nobody else’s wife to rank with her” (34). He expected Janie to be his trophy wife and just look better than everyone else. Tea Cake Woods’ expectations of Janie as a wife is the same as well. He had a different approach on it though, all Tea Cake wanted is for Janie to be his equal and nothing more. His motivation, is love. Tea Cake loves Janie and the way he expresses this is when he says, “Put dat two hundred back wid de rest, Janie. Mah dice. Ah...
If Ah ever gits tuh messin’ round another woman it won’t be on account of her age. It’ll be because she got me in de same way you got me—so Ah can’t help mahself." Tea Cake professes his love to Janie by saying that she is the only woman he thought of marrying. Tea Cake knows that he will be loyal to Janie, but can not control other women's urges to flirt with him. When Tea Cake tells Janie that he is the man in her life he says:"You don’t have tuh say, if it wuzn’t fuh me, baby, cause Ah’m heah, and then Ah want yuh tuh know it’s uh man heah." (Ch.18). Tea Cake wants Janie to know that he is nothing like her other husbands, but is perfect for her. Tea Cake is essentially perfect for Janie because he helped her accomplish her her ultimate dream of love. Janie and Tea Cake’s marriage is the key to a good marriage because they treat each other with equality and
Hurston uses ethos to show that Tea Cake was Janie’s best husband even though society thinks other wise. Tea Cake thinks that he will treat and show Janie a better time in life than any man has ever did. “Ah tell you lak you told me--you’se mighty hard tuh satisfy. Ah betcha dem lips don't satisfy yuh neither(page.103).” Tea Cake was telling Janie that she put on the show that she is hard to please but truly it only takes the right things to make her pleased. He felt that most of the things that Janie was doing was a show. Society felt that Tea Cake was playing Janie and Janie was taking chances falling in love with Tea Cake. “You doin right not tuh talk it, but Janie, you’se takin’ uuh mighty big chance(page.115).” Janie was having a discussion and they were telling her that she was taking a chance running off with Tea Cake. Phoebe feels as if Tea Cake is just a bomb ready to explode in Janie face. Janie felt that Tea Cake was the true love that she was always looking for in her life. “He done showed me where it’s de thought dat makes de difference in age(page.115).” Tea Cake changes janie’s whole train of thought around , so there had to be some love somewhere to make someone change their mind. Janie was really in love with Tea Cake.
To begin with, a husband needs to be honest with his wife. Out of all of Janie’s husbands Tea Cake is the least honest one, but one of the times he does lie to her, but he makes it better. Tea Cake is going everyday and working then spending some nights till late with his friends. Janie wakes up one day finding out that her
As much as Tea Cake had the qualities Janie was looking for she found a greater understanding of herself as a women besides her love. Janie was inexperienced at the start of her adventure, learned that love will not always come from promises, and had major reflection when she finished her first marriage with Joe that she went into with assurance. Janie was able to get a glimpse of independency after Joe died which is conveyed through the quote “Besides she liked being lonesome for a change. This freedom feeling was fine” (Hurston 90). Before meeting, Tea Cake Janie was able to understand that she was comfortable with not searching for love. However, Tea Cake was a reminder to her that her ideals of love were still out in the world. He was able to make Janie happy from doing things fun and childish and these activities like fishing during the knight, or playing chess were the things that society would not accept for a women like Janie. The first major instance when Tea Cake helped Janie go against society was when he played chess with her. While a small act to some readers, Janie found the act enormous in her eyes as it showed her that Tea Cake was a man able
Through her three marriages, the death of her one true love, and proving her innocence in Tea Cake’s death, Janie learns to look within herself to find her hidden voice. Growing as a person from the many obstacles she has overcome during her forty years of life, Janie finally speaks her thoughts, feelings and opinions. From this, she finds what she has been searching for her whole life, happiness.
In order to fully appreciate Janie and Tea Cake’s relationship we have to look at her previous relationships along with her childhood influences. Janie was raised by her grandmother named Nannie who tried to put Janie in the best situations that she could to succeed and live comfortably. Although they were colored and didn’t have a lot of money, her grandmother bought them a small house and some land so that Janie wouldn’t feel inferior to others especially the white children. In fact, Janie fit in so well at first that she didn’t even recognize herself in a group photo. “But before Ah seen
Truly life was hard for many people in the early 20th century but the amount of tragedies that happened to Janie and some of her decisions were a bit outlandish. Janie is depicted as an extreme free spirit in a time where women empowerment was not on the rise, Janie made many independent choices without any repercussions like leaving her first husband. Janie left her first husband for Joe Starks abruptly and almost without any warning or punishment, her husband seemed to be okay with her decision and the grandmother that forced Janie into the marriage in the first place is nowhere to be seen. Another aspect of the story that was slightly unbelievable was Tea Cakes death. Tea Cake dies after getting bit by a rabid dog in the middle of a raging hurricane just seconds after the house that he and Janie share is overcome by waves. It seems as if too many things of epic proportions happened at nearly the same time. The question here is how was the dog even able to survive when Tea Cake and Janie were almost drowned by the storm? This question is never answered.
As a husband, He treated her with respect and love, unlike Joe Sparks. Also, he did not see her as one of his possessions to be seen and never heard, instead he saw her a person capable to learning and understanding. He taught her how to play checkers, handle guns and listened to her opinions. Tea Cakes also had a much different personality from Joe Starks. He was just as hardworking as Joe Starks, but his ambition is not channeled to acquiring more possessions and power. He was content with what he has and strove to provide for him and his wife. While married to Tea Cakes, Janie was able to express herself be free and independent. She was treated with respect and not inferiority hence she is able to make her own decisions for herself and grow as an
In the movie, Oprah Winfrey changes the audience’s perception of Janie’s relationship with Tea Cake by excluding the abuse and jealousy that takes place in the novel. "Janie learned what it felt like to be jealous. A little chunky girl took to picking a play out of Tea Cake in the fields and in the quarters. If he said anything at all, she’d take the opposite side and hit him or shove him and run away to make him chase her. Janie knew what she was up to – luring him away from the crowd. It kept up for two or three weeks with Nunkie getting bolder all the time. She’d hit Tea Cake playfully and the minute he so much as tapped her with his finger she’d fall against him or fall on the ground and have to be picked up. She’d be almost helpless. It took a good deal of handling to set her on her feet again. And another thing, Tea Cake didn’t seem to be able to fend her of...
...women he has seen walk seven full miles. But at the same time he still wants to feel like the man. In chapter 13, nstead of hitting her to show that, he just wants to be able to support his wife. "Put dat two hundred back wid de rest, Janie. Mah dice. Ah no need no assistance tuh help me feed mah woman. From now on, you gointuh eat whutever mah money can buy uh and wear de same. When Ah ain’t got nothin’ you don’t git nothin’." Tea Cake demonstrates his strong sense of masculinity by making "his woman," Janie, financially dependent on him. He takes pride in being able to provide for a woman who has lived such a privileged life. Although Janie never seems conflicted about living a poor life with Tea Cake, she kind of has to agree to live by what he provides or severely damage his pride. Also Janie likes that feeling of finally having someone who wants to support her.
Through the novel, Tea Cake shows confidence in several different ways. For instance, Tea Cake displays overconfidence towards gambling, “You done married one uh de best gamblers God ever made. Cards or dice either one…” (125). Tea Cakes overconfidence over gambling results in a fight with Double-Ugly, “Right dere he jumped at me as Ah turned to see de doorstep outside and cut me twice in de back” (127). For the most part, Tea Cake is confident about himself, yet his overconfidence leads to conflicts.
Janie’s three marriages were all different, each one brought her in for a different reason, and each one had something different to teach her. In summary, she married Logan because of her grandmother, Jody because she wanted to escape from Logan, and Tea Cake because they had true love. The marriages were different in that Logan treated Janie like a Slave, Joe was moulding her into what he wanted her to be, and Tea Cake just wanted to be with her. As a result, Janie learned many things from each marriage Tea Cake taught her to be herself and do what she wanted to, her marriage with Logan taught her to make changes in her life, and her marriage with Joe taught her to stand up for herself. In conclusion, her experiences in her marriages shaped her into the person she became, and were an important part of her life.
...d feels that she is lucky to have him. Joe Starks, Janie's second husband, seems to be her singing bee when they first meet but she realizes that he is not. When Joe becomes what he strived to be, he tried to control Janie and change her into what he expected and thought for her to be. Only Tea Cake, Janie's final husband, truly cared for the person that she really was and treated her as his equal. He encouraged her to speak her mind and tell him her opinion so that they can gain a better understanding of each other. In the course of these marriages, Janie is lead toward a development of self and when she arrives back in her hometown she has grown into a mature, independent woman who was still left with the warm memories of love and laughter with Tea Cake.