Essay PreviewMore ↓
Perceptions of Marriage in Their Eyes Were Watching God
For generations marriage has been accepted as a bond between two
people. However, the ideals involved in marriage differ by the individuals
involved. The book, Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston
clearly demonstrates these differences. In the book a girl by the name
Janie is raised by her grandmother and then married off by her grandmother.
Originally all Janie knows of marriage and love is what her grandmother
tells her. As Janie moves on in her life and re-marries, she finds that
everybody has their own idea towards the role of their spouses in marriage.
Over time Janie begins to develop her own ideas and ideals. In Their Eyes
Were Watching God each principle character has their own perceptions
The first ideas that Janie was exposed to was those of her
grandmother, Nanny. Nanny saw that Janie was entering womanhood and she
didn't want Janie to experience what her mother went through. So Nanny set
out to marry her as soon as possible. When Janie asked about love, she was
told that marriage makes love and she will find love after she marries
Logan. Nanny believed that love was second to stability and security.
Only after those first two criteria were satisfied then and only then could
one experience love. Nanny felt that a young girl like Janie was too young
to make decisions for herself, so when she caught Janie exploring her
womanhood Nanny felt that she needed to marry Janie as quickly as possible
so that she could find love in a safe a secure environment. Nanny has her
own ideals when it comes to marriage and Janie will soon learn that
everyone's are different.
Second, Janie sees Logan Killicks' perception of marriage. In the
beginning it appears to Janie that Logan is a very nice gentleman, who is
constantly treating her well. However as time goes on, Janie see Logan's
"true colors." Logan feels that if they are both going to live together
and share their lives then they should do an equal amount of work. Logan
soon puts Janie to work and treats her more like a mule than a wife. Logan
didn't want a wife out of marriage; he wanted a pack animal. Also, love
doesn't seem to be incorporated in Logan's definition of marriage. As
Janie said "Ah know ‘tain't nothin' dere." Logan didn't see marriage in
terms of love, he only saw it in terms of free labor.
After leaving Logan in search of love Janie finds Jody Starks.
How to Cite this Page
"Perceptions of Marriage in Their Eyes Were Watching God." 123HelpMe.com. 16 Aug 2018
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- In Zora Neale Hurston’s novel Their Eyes Were Watching God, the character of Janie Crawford experiences severe ideological conflicts with her grandmother, and the effects of these conflicts are far-reaching indeed. Hurston’s novel of manners, noted for its exploration of the black female experience, fully shows how a conflict with one’s elders can alter one’s self image. In the case of Janie and Nanny, it is Janie’s perception of men that is altered, as well as her perception of self. The conflict between the two women is largely generational in nature, and appears heart-breakingly inevitable.... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]
700 words (2 pages)
- 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]
785 words (2.2 pages)
- Oprah’s interpretation of Their Eyes Were Watching God sends multiple important details and significant events on a mass exodus, completely altering the story. With a different title, changing focus, unrecognizable characters, an altered theme, and the absence of symbolism, the entire meaning of the journey skews in this false interpretation of a classic novel. The elements of racial conflict and the purity of relationships are also replaced, removed, and distorted. All of the major details in the original story never reveal themselves in the movie, making the end product calamitous.... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God, Oprah Winfrey]
2003 words (5.7 pages)
- In Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Heale Hurston a former slave named Nanny's ideal marriage is if the relationship provides both protection and security. Although people always have their own perspectives and standpoints of problems that are different from others, Nanny's own view of marriage is influenced by slavery and her ill-fated life experience. As a former slave, Nanny's idea of marriage is influenced by her social status. Back to the years of slavery, African-American couldn't get too much freedom, and they were treated as goods by their white masters.... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]
811 words (2.3 pages)
- Janie’s Perfect Marriage in Their Eyes Were Watching God Human beings are not isolated individuals. We do not wander through a landscape of trees and dunes alone, reveling in our own thoughts. Rather, we need relationships with other human beings to give us a sense of support and guidance. We are social beings, who need talk and company almost as much as we need food and sleep. We need others so much, that we have developed a custom that will insure company: marriage. Marriage assures each of us of company and association, even if it is not always positive and helpful.... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]
776 words (2.2 pages)
- Zora Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God as a Creation Story Zora Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God is, among other things, a creation story. For creation stories are not simply myths about the historical origins of the universe and humankind but metaphors for individual maturation. Individual perception is, to a large extent, what constitutes the world. Hence, the individual is the source and embodiment of the world; Janie is, the narrator tells us, “the world and the heavens boiled down to a drop” (72).... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]
2560 words (7.3 pages)
- 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]
1323 words (3.8 pages)
- Janie's Search for Identity in Their Eyes Were Watching God In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, there are many lessons on a person's search for identity. Janie's search for identity throughout this book is very visible. It has to do with her search for a name, and freedom for herself. As she goes through life her search takes many turns for the worse and a few for the better, but in the end she finds her true identity. Through her marriages with Logan, Joe, then Tea Cake she figures out what is for her and how she wants to live.... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]
993 words (2.8 pages)
- Voice and Language in Their Eyes Were Watching God 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.... [tags: Their Eyes Were Watching God Essays]
2787 words (8 pages)
- 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]
2985 words (8.5 pages)
Jody Starks is a thriving politician with a hard work ethic. He says he
loves Janie and even treats her the way a queen should be treated. Jody
keeps Janie looking prim and proper in the house and store. Jody truly
believes that women should be seen and not heard. Jody believes that in a
marriage that the man is boss and the wife should listen to him. He is a
true politician; on the outside he appears kind and gentle but from within
he is corrupt. Janie still can't find love and continues her search.
The final person that Janie attempts to find love in is Tea Cake
Woods. Tea Cake comes in a rescues Janie from her misery after the death
of Jody. It is here that Janie finally finds what true love is. Tea
Cake's idea of marriage is a mutual relationship where he would prefer to
support Janie. However when times are rough Janie willingly helps Tea
Cakes in the fields. Tea Cake believes in being completely honest with
Janie and doesn't try to hold anything from her. Also, like Nanny Tea Cake
sought protection for Janie he didn't want anything to happen to her; and
in the end he laid down his life for her. Tea Cake's perception of
marriage is different from the others but it is still his own ideals.
And the last person who has ideas about marriage is Janie herself.
In the beginning she felt that marriage made love. But soon she found that
to be untrue. In each of her marriages she found that marriage
expectations were different for everyone. In fact Janie's parting word's
were, "you must tell ‘em date love Anita smoothen' la ugh grindstone data's
de same thing everywhere and do de same thing tub everything it touch.
Love is la de sea. It's ugh moving' thing, but still and all, it takes
shape from de shore it meets, and it's different with every shore." Janie
found that marriage changes with the participants and you must find one
with who you are compatible.
Everyone has separate ideas of what marriage should be. As Janie
learned marriage is what you make of it. Love can only be found when your
beliefs coincide with another's ideas. Even today people find out the hard
way that they are not compatible and that everyone's perception of marriage
is different. This can be seen everyday among couples who separate and
among others whose marriages last the rest of their lives. Life is a
learning process and we must take the bad with the good.