In one way or another, every person has felt repressed at some stage during their lives. Their Eyes Were Watching God is a story about one woman's quest to free herself from repression and explore her own identity; this is the story of Janie Crawford and her journey for self-knowledge and fulfillment. Janie transforms many times as she undergoes the process of self-discovery as she changes through her experiences with three completely different men. Her marriages serve as stepping-stones in her search for her true self, and she becomes independent and powerful by overcoming her fears and learning to speak in her own, unique voice. Zora Neale Hurston effectively shows Janie's transformation throughout the book by means of language and her development of Janie's voice through the different stages of her life. Her use of free indirect discourse exemplifies Janie's power in overcoming oppression, realizing her own potential, and emerging as an individual.
Throughout the novel, Hurston's intertwining of the black vernacular (in the
form of direct discourse in quoted text) and Standard English (in the form
of indirect discourse in third person unquoted text) creates a seamless,
fluid narration which provides insight into Janie's soul on two levels. This
combination of the two seemingly dichotomous aspects of language is called
free indirect discourse (also called "speakerly text") 1. Through free
indirect discourse, Hurston is able to effectively express Janie's inner and
outer voices (which become stronger throughout the novel) as she develops
through a series of relationships and acquires greater self-identity.
... middle of paper ...
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Online. Internet. 8 October 1997.
Available < http: 11 www. ñ hsc. usc.edu/ ~ gallaher/ hurston/ hurston.
Johnson, Barbara. "Metaphor, Metonymy and Voice in Their Eyes Were Watching
God." Modern Critical Interpretations: Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were
Watching God. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1987.
Kubitschek, Missy Dehn. " 'Tuh de Horizon and Back': The Female Quest in
Their Eyes Were Watching God." Modern Critical Interpretations: Zora Neale
Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea
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