"Their Eyes Were Watching God" by Zora Neale Hurston

Essay by pimp37 January 2007

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In "Their Eyes Were Watching God," Janie the protagonist of the novel battles to find herself and her true love. All her life she had been pushed around and told what to do and how to live her life. She searched high and low to find a peace that would make her whole and make her feel like a complete person. During that time, men were looked to as the superior being, where women were supposed to look up to and serve. It was very hard for Janie since she was an African American woman during those times. Throughout the book, Janie makes many mistakes in trying to find who she really is, while trying to achieve the respect that she deserves.

Living with her Grandmother and the Washburn's, Janie was surrounded and raised with white children. She always believed that she was white herself, and that she was no different than anybody else.

As she was growing up, she was told what to do and how to live by her grandmother. Janie's grandmother planned her life out for her. She told her that she must get married right away. Janie's grandmother wanted what was best for Janie, which was to marry a husband as soon as she could so that she would be provided social status. Janie's grandmother told Janie that she could not marry Johnny Taylor; the one that Janie wanted to marry, and that she must marry Logan, for protection. Towards the end of the book, Janie resents her grandmother for "living her life" for her and planning her future. To succeed in life, we need to learn from our own mistakes, and live with the weight of our decisions. This is exactly what Janie did in her marriage to...