Summary of Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neil Hurston

Essay by 2late88High School, 12th gradeA+, February 2005

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In "There Eyes Were Watching God", by Zora Neil Hurston, the protagonist Janie Crawford embarks on a journey for love. Her journey leads her through the obstacles of life. Through the various tests, that Janie takes, she is able to distinguish between allies and enemies, allowing her to fulfill her mission.

Nanny, Janie's grandmother inculcates Janie with her idea of love before Janie is able to make the decision for herself. Born during slavery, Nanny believed that love would come as long as your spouse could take care of you. Therefore since Logan had plenty of land he could make Janie happy. "Finally out of Nanny's talk and her own conjecture she made a sort of comfort for herself. Yes, she would love Logan after they were married." Unfortunately Janie, only "makes a comfort", in other words all she does is settle. With Nanny's idea of love in mind she sets off on a relationship destined to fail.

Although the symbolic pear tree wilts this season, it is still capable of blossoming, after one year she leaves Logan in search for a better tomorrow.

Joe Starks, Janie's second husband seems to bring the escape Janie desperately craves from Logan. His new attitude and vivid dreams awaken Janie's sense of adventure. She runs away with him, avoiding Logan, and her problems. Unfortunately the escape does not bring freedom. She is doomed to live in the shadow of an arrogant, pompous man bent on becoming superior to the rest of humanity. Joe does not allow Janie to fulfill her dreams; in fact he beats her into submission. Only when Janie speaks up, "Nah, ah ain't yo' gal no mo'!" is she able to free herself from his prison. Joe dies a miserable man, and his last words are drenched with bitterness "Much...