Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay

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The movie and the book of Their Eyes Were Watching God both tell the story of a young woman’s journey to finding love; however, the movie lacks the depth and meaning behind the importance of Janie’s desire for self-fulfillment. Oprah Winfrey’s version alters the idea from the book Zora Neale Hurston wrote, into a despairing love story for the movie. Winfrey changes Hurston’s story in various ways by omitting significant events and characters, which leads to a different theme than what the novel portrays. The symbolisms and metaphors emphasized throughout the book are almost non-existent in the movie, changing the overall essence of the story. While Zora Neale Hurston’s portrayal gives a more in depth view of Janie’s journey of self-discovery and need for fulfilling love, Oprah Winfrey’s version focuses mainly on a passionate love story between Janie and Tea Cake.
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...


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......." Teen Ink. Emerson Media, n.d. Web. 20 Nov. 2013. .
Hurston, Zora N. Their Eyes Were Watching God. New York, NY: HarperCollins, 2000. Print.
Kikaya, Feza, and Zahra Gordon. "Silver Chips Online : Oprah Winfrey's "Their Eyes Were Watching God" receives mixed ..." Silver Chips Online [Silver Spring, MD]. N.p., 9 Mar. 2005. Web. 20 Nov. 2013. .
Miller, JDove. "Movie vs Book: Their Eyes Were Watching God." Hubpages. N.p., 17 May 2010. Web. 20 Nov. 2013. .
"A Woman on a Quest, via Hurston and Oprah - NYTimes.com." The New York Times. The New York Times Company, 4 Mar. 2005. Web. 20 Nov. 2013. .

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