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Their Eyes Were Watching God Symbols and Themes
Transcript of Their Eyes Were Watching God Symbols and Themes
By: Emily Trossarello
2. Janie's Hair
It represents strength and the power of being an individual. Every place Janie has lived has judged her on her hair in both good ways and bad ways. Her refusal to listen to their opinions on her hair shows how strong she is and how she is not afraid to be different.
Her hair also gives her a younger look which connects her to her childhood. It represents how she's held on to the same dreams and ideals from when she was younger.
The Muck represents Janie's lifelong urge to get to be a little wild and do whatever she wants. It gave her the freedom to stop being a high class lady and start being just a lady. She begins to become herself while working with the rest of them.
How I envisioned
the Muck looking.
3. The Mule
The mule represents how Janie (and really women in general) was always put down and kicked around. She was pushed into a marriage, bullied by her second husband, and even Teacake was constantly trying to push her to do what he thought she wanted to do.
4. The Pear Tree
It represents Janie's constant pull towards certain men and her views on marriage and love. Constantly in her tale she is trying to capture the beauty and blissfulness she witnessed between the bees and the pear tree. She is chasing after this ideal of what love should be like.
The checkers represent Janie's urge to learn things that she was not allowed to learn previously. Teacake allows her to expand her knowledge of everything and to see the world in new ways. It starts with the checkers and ends with learning how to really love and be adored completely.
6. The Road
This represents Janie's wish throughout the book to flee and find new adventures. The only time she was really satisfied was with Teacake. She was always looking for a way out with every other husband.
7. The Rabid Dog
This represents how life can be cruel sometimes. When Janie had finally found a man that she didn't want to run away from, he was taken from her. It had a sick sense of irony because this time it was the man going away from Janie first when the other times, it was Janie who detached first either emotionally or physically.
8. The Sun
The sun comes up a lot throughout the book. Though it's not really a theme, I think that it is a symbol really for the entire story. Janie starts in the morning and finishes at night. The sun is representing the decline of her story as it sets and the happy times of her story as it reaches the top of the sky.
9. The Hurricane
The hurricane represents how everything can change with the blink of an eye and how there are some things you have to run from. Teacake and Janie think at first that they can brave it but in the end learn not to think so highly of themselves and Janie realizes she can't always have some kind of control over a situation.
Throughout the book, death is brought up many times. First Janie's grandmother, then her second and third husband. She is constantly battling the struggle of losing loved ones and it shows just how strong she is. Janie never lets herself be beaten down when death claims those around her. She picks herself up and moves on eventually, no matter how hard it is for her.