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Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora NEale Hurston - Book Report/Review Example

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Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora NEale Hurston

Janie is a young woman who's grandmother, a borne slave for whom living in comfort implies being just able to sit on the porch and not be working every hour of the day for barren survival finds an older, conventional husband for Janie and insists her to marry. TEWWG is a symbol for the growth of the individual perception the source and personification of the world. Janie is, the narrator tells us, "the world and the heavens boiled down to a drop" (page 72). And Janie's arousing stands not only for a personal change, but the making of a world.
Jannie's story begins with her entry into the forbidden area of sexuality when she kisses Johnny Taylor over her grandmother's hedge( and the prying Nanny at first feigning to overlook only to slap her later ) as if her "life commence[s] at Nanny's gate" (page10) since the whole scene almost echoed the Fall of the mythical couple the from the Garden of Eden because they ate the forbidden fruit of knowledge.
We are introduced to Janie in a utopian garden, in which there is a tree of prohibited fruit-a pear tree symbolizing sexuality: "She saw a dust-bearing bee sink into the sanctum of a bloom; the thousand sister-calyxes arch to meet the love embrace and the ecstatic shiver of the tree from root to tiniest branch creaming in every blossom and frothing with delight" (page 11). Janie is, obviously, lured to the fruit like Eve and soon eats of it by kissing Johnny Taylor over her grandmother's fence almost echoing the scene in Genesis where Adam and Eve eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden., Janie's grandmother albeit spotter the physical closeness calls her into the house feigning not to have seen anything. Janie "half believe[s]" that her "Nanny" has not seen her, and her grandmother indirectly raises the topic and finally catch hold of Janie and "slap[s]" her "face violently" ( page 13), as if to enact The Genesis, where the all knowing God obviously knows when Adam and Eve have eaten the forbidden fruit. Yet, like Janie's Nanny, feigns to ignore first and at last, just as Janie's grandmother rebukes her by slapping and forcing her to marry Logan Killicks, so God curses Adam and Eve a exile from paradise and to come down to the world. Life on this world and its inbuilt violence do not mean that Janie has settled with it; her world is nowhere near finished.
For Nanny, things are certainly different. She fears that Janie will become a "mule" to some man, so she plans Janie to marry Logan Killicks albeit older and farmer looking for a wife to maintain his home and help him in his work Janie as we have seen already has the idea that marriage must be sensuouslu beautiful like the bees pollinating the pear tree , the human ealike to this naturalphenomenon.
Yet even though she protests, Janie finally yields to her grandmother and marries Logan Killicks. Although she does not love Killicks, she forces herself to love him after since that is "what marriage [means]" (pag20) in spite of the fact that Janie is at least in words put through added violence, as Killicks tells her, "Ah'll take holt uh dat ax and come in dere and kill yuh!" (page 30). Yet whereas we expected Janie to be submissively accepting her husbands dictates like her grandmother's slap, Janie returns and probably starts being aggressively hostile to Killicks.in bed, telling him, "S'posin' Ah wuz to run ...Show more

Summary

Their Eyes Were Watching God (TEWWG) is a novel (first published in 1937) by a leading African-American writer Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960) at the zenith of the Harlem Renaissance. It follows the destiny of Janie Crawford, a woman living in the black town of Eaton, Florida as she experiences the very different men in her life…
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