Three Features of "Their Eyes Were Watching God"

Three Features of "Their Eyes Were Watching God"

Length: 447 words (1.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Excellent

Open Document

Essay Preview

More ↓
Every novel has a protagonist and an antagonist of the story. There has to be a "good guy" and "bad guy" in order for there to be some sort of an interesting plot. In Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, my most and least favorite characters happen to be the protagonist, Janie, and the antagonist, Jody Starks. There are many things that symbolize these characters that are both comparable and contradictory of my personality. Symbols, objects or characters that are used to represent abstract ideas or concepts, play a major role in this novel. Janie is represented by her hair and Jody by his power, wealth and status of the town. Janie Jody and the symbolic representations are the three most appealing fundamentals of the story.

Janie is an exceptionally interesting person. She is still developing and does not know exactly what she wants at her point in life. She is still exploring her world and who she wants to be. I am at that same point in my life so it is easy for me to relate to her and understand what she is going through. I have countless opportunities but am unsure of which prospect will fulfill my life in the future. Janie is in the same position and is doing what she has to do to find out what will implement her life best. She is uncertain how she would like to live her life or even what she wants in her life. There is only one thing she is positive she wants to encompass in her life, which is true love.

Jody Starks on the other hand knows what he wants, which is the only thing I admire about him. It is the way he treats people while he is going after his aspirations that make him the protagonist of the story. Jody is very inconsiderate of other people. He fails to show Janie any love and affection, which is what she truly wants. He is merely worried about gaining more power and becoming wealthier. Jody is an intelligent individual and knows which people to talk to at the right time and how to keep them pleased. He knows how to read people and tell them what they want to hear.

The way Hurston brings symbols into the story makes it much more attention-grabbing.

How to Cite this Page

MLA Citation:
"Three Features of "Their Eyes Were Watching God"." 123HelpMe.com. 11 Dec 2019
    <https://www.123helpme.com/view.asp?id=111395>.

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

`` Their Eyes Were Watching God `` By Zora Neale Hurston And The Lighthouse By Virginia Woolf

- Agency according to the Oxford English Dictionary is the, “Ability or capacity to act or exert power,” (“Agency’). In marriage this is an interesting concept as there are only two parties involved in a marriage. Each party desires control; however there is often an imbalance of power. In many of modernist works there is a clear investigation into the agency of women in marriage. Many women lacked agency in marriage at this time, such as the inability to make decisions about their children or the expectation that their only role was to clean the house and cook....   [tags: Marriage, Husband, Wife, Zora Neale Hurston]

Research Papers
1470 words (4.2 pages)

Essay on Colorism: Creating a Racial Divide in the African American Community

- ... Janie's mixed race appearance allowed her to be a median between whites and blacks. She did not have the full privileges of being a white woman; however, she did not have the full disadvantages of being a black woman either. She too was "vulnerable" to the "oppression" black women faced but did not feel a sense of racial entrapment because of her skin color (Bealer 312). It is Hassan 4 because of Janie's acceptance of her light skin complexion and lesser "social and [racial] impediments" that excludes her from the mule status of black women....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God, zora neale hurston]

Research Papers
1907 words (5.4 pages)

Essay In Eyes of One Man's Heart: A Memoir

- “In Eyes of One Man’s Heart” I never imaged I would be composing a story about my life. I have encountered considerable challenges and obstacles that have forged and molded me as a person. Nevertheless, I did not experience some of the hardships and struggles that others have confronted in their lives, such as segregation, Jim Crow laws, riots, or not being able to vote. However, my physical, cognitive, and social development was a direct product of a no-nonsense religious upbringing. I was born in a small town in Arkansas to a relatively large family....   [tags: Autobiography]

Research Papers
1551 words (4.4 pages)

Essay on Their Eyes Were Watching God: The Undying Power of Will

- The traditional human existence encounters immense and miniscule transformations in predominant viewpoints directly affecting subsequent proceedings as individuals embark upon an expedition of lucid self-expression to explore personal identity. Literary pieces produced during times of revolution to gain equality and flourishing cultural advancement as artistic innovations, primarily in the Harlem Renaissance, communicates deliberately the liberation of the individuals frequently portrayed as characters....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God]

Research Papers
785 words (2.2 pages)

Characters, Themes and Imagery in Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay examples

- Characters, Themes and Imagery in Their Eyes Were Watching God         Zora Neale Hurston was one of the first widely acclaimed black writers to "assimilate folk tradition into modern literature and express her interpretations of the black culture throughout her books" (Bailey, 175).  She was also one of the most influential of black American writers during the twentieth century because she exceeded the barriers of race, sex and poverty.  Hurston's most acclaimed work is said to be Their Eyes Were Watching God, and has been read, adored, rejected, reviewed, and badgered by many literary critics.  "In a book rich with imagery and black oral tradition, Zora Neale Hurston tells us of a woman...   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]

Research Papers
2985 words (8.5 pages)

Essay on Imagery in Their Eyes Were Watching God

- Positive Imagery in Their Eyes Were Watching God In Zora Neale Hurston's novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, the life of Janie is presented as a journey. Janie survives a grandmother, three husbands, and innumerable friends. Throughout this journey, she moves towards her ideals about love and how to live one's life. Hurston chooses to define Janie not by what is wrong in her life, but by what is good in it. Janie undergoes many changes throughout her journey, but the imagery in her life always conjures positive ideas in the mind of the reader....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]

Research Papers
1090 words (3.1 pages)

Essay on Equality and Inequality in Their Eyes Were Watching God

- Equality and Inequality in Their Eyes Were Watching God In the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, the author, Zora Neale Hurston, attempts to bring into light problems caused by prejudice. However, as she tries to show examples of inequality through various character relationships, examples of equality are revealed through other relationships. Janie, the novel's main character, encounters both inequality and equality through the treatment she receives during her three marriages.      Janie's first marriage is to Logan Killicks....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]

Research Papers
1323 words (3.8 pages)

Essay on The Growth of Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God

- The Growth of Janie in Their Eyes Were Watching God         Human beings love inertia. It is human nature to fear the unknown and to desire stability in life. This need for stability leads to the concept of possessing things, because possession is a measurable and definite idea that all society has agreed upon. Of course, when people begin to rely on what they know to be true, they stop moving forward and simply stand still. Zora Neal Hurston addresses these general human problems in her novel Their Eyes Were Watching God....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]

Research Papers
2959 words (8.5 pages)

Essay on Use of Clothing in Their Eyes Were Watching God

- Use of Clothing in Their Eyes Were Watching God       In the novel Their Eyes were watching God Zora Neale Hurston portrays a woman named Janie's search for love and freedom. Janie, throughout the novel, bounces through three different marriages, with a brief stint at being a widow in between. Throughout these episodes, Hurston uses Janie`s clothing as a visual bookmark of where Janie is in her search for true love and how she is being influenced by those around her.   Janie's first article of clothing is an apron that she wears while married to Logan Killiks as a hard working sixteen year old....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]

Free Essays
1308 words (3.7 pages)

Finding Hope in Their Eyes Were Watching God Essay examples

- Finding Hope in Their Eyes Were Watching God     Their Eyes Were Watching God recognizes that there are problems to the human condition, such as the need to possess, the fear of the unknown and resulting stagnation. But Hurston does not leave us with the hopelessness of Fitzgerald or Hemingway, rather, she extends a recognition and understanding of humanity's need to escape emptiness. "Dem meatskins is got tuh rattle tuh make out they's alive (183)" Her solution is simple: "Yuh got tuh go there tuh know there." Janie, like characters in earlier novels, sets out on a quest to make sense of her inner questionings--a void she knew she possessed from the moment she sat under the pear tree....   [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]

Research Papers
3086 words (8.8 pages)

She does not make them challenging to find like some other novels I have read. For example, Janie's hair is mentioned numerous times just in the beginning of the book. In the beginning of the story, one of the first things mentioned was about Janie's hair; "the great rope of black hair swinging to her waist and unraveling in the wind like a plume" (Hurston 2). It almost seems as if her hair represents the strengths of Janie. When Jody advises Janie to put her hair up in a rag, she does not talk back or speak her mind the way she did with Logan Killicks, her first husband, when her hair was down. Power symbolizes Jody because he tries to control everyone and everything around him to maintain this false impression of overpowering the town. He is fixated with his ideas of power. When Janie eventually brings down his secure sense of his own power, she ruins his character and will to live.

Janie is my most favorable character and I think that was Hurston's intentions for the reader while she was writing the book. Janie's life and the choices she has to make relates to my life which makes the story more enjoyable to read. Jody is my least favorite character because he married Janie as an object that he thought would help him, not because he really loved her. Also, the symbolism in the story made it more exciting to read, because everything in the novel has both literal and hidden meanings.

Return to 123HelpMe.com