9 January 2013

My journal for THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD



  • I thought Janie had a very imaginary and creative mind that she had another world in her mind.  She described the nature or saw it in a different way.  For example, in chapter 2, under the pear tree, she described marriage by referring bees.  Then, the narrator asked, “Where were the singing bees for her?”  These bees could be the symbol for men.  That is, she looked at the nature from her specific point of view and commenting on the natural events according to her world.  She wanted to be with a man who was romantic.  The other example was in chapter 4, Joe Starks said, “Call me Jody lak you do sometime.”  I understood this Janie established another name for Joe or she made a reduction for his name.  This showed again that Janie interpreted his name according to her world.  She wanted to say sometimes Jody, so she called him as Jody.


  •             While reading the novel, from time to time, I got upset.  My first sadness was that Janie had to get married Logan at the end of chapter 3, and she understood marriage did not make love.  I was sorry for her because she wanted to marry having a love relationship with her husband.  The other time I got upset for her was that Jody wanted her to tie her hair up.  She was dominated by a man who Janie thought she loved him once.  Last disappointing moment was the scene of that Janie killed Tea Cake, in chapter 19.  These sentences were very emotional while reading it “It was the meanest moment of eternity.  A minute before she was just a scared human being fighting for its life .”


  •             I like Janie’s some thoughts.  In the novel, she was not interest in political issues.  Instead of this, she was interested in happiness and love.  She spent her life without thinking any social problem or politics.  Because of this, Janie could not be happy with Jody.  When she was with her friend Mrs. Turner, Tea Cake heard that Mrs. Turner wanted Janie to meet her lighter brother in chapter 16.  Then, he did not allow Janie to see Mrs. Turner again.  Janie followed what he said although she liked her as a friend.  I thought, if a person gives up her friend for her boyfriend, she must love him madly.  Alternatively, Janie wanted to be just happy and she did not want to discuss this with Tea Cake, so she accepted his idea.


  •             Tea Cake was a liar.  He stole Janie’s money and lied about it in chapter 13.  Then, gambling appeared in the novel.  I thought, Tea Cake spent all her money on card games, but he lost and he did not dare to say this loss.  He wanted to gain Janie’s love and trust again, so he proposed to gain lost money from gambling.  Last semester, I learned from my drama analysis lesson that gambling can be a reference for the chance.  You cannot control the cards and you cannot always win.  To win, you should try more and more or play more.  This gambling looked like Janie’s life.  She tried to find love.  She seemed playing gambling on her life.  Finally, she found her love with Tea Cake.  I understood that a lie or chance might affect our lives in some way .


  •             I remembered The Great Gatsby in which we witnessed to racism.  For example, Tom said on page 16, in chapter 1, “Well, it’s a fine book… The idea is if we don’t look out the white race will be- will be utterly submerged.  It’s all scientific stuff; It’s been proved.”  He talked about white people should not mix with dark people. Like this novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God had also some racism examples.  One of them was in chapter 16.  Mrs. Turner disliked blacks and she said “Mis’ Woods, Ah have often said to mah husband, Ah don’t see how uh lady like Mis’ Woods can stand all them common niggers round her place all de time”  She loved Janie because of her kind behaviors and hair style.  However, she hated Tea Cake because he had dark skin.  Moreover, in chapter 19, a man said while gathering dead bodies “Don’t dump dem bodies in de hole lad dat! Examine every last one of’ em and find out if they’s white or black…They makin’ coffins fuh all de white folks.” This was a clear example for racism.  Even their dead bodies were not considered the same as white bodies.


  •             I think the scene of dog’s biting Tea Cake could be a symbol for the fight between white and dark skinned people.  The dog was described in chapter 18 as powerful and angry.  In those times, white people were angry because they thought they were superior to dark people and they did not want to be seen in the same status with dark people.  If I think the dog as white people, the dog gave harm to its environment and bit Tea Cake who has dark skin.  Tea Cake was described as over tired.  It could be a reference for all dark skinned people that they were tired of being threatened as slavery by white people .


  •             Again, like The Great Gatsby, this novel remembered me the class difference.  Gatsby and Myrtle wanted to be like high class Daisy and Tom. They made reaching the high class an aim for their lives.  In Their Eyes Were Watching God, at the end of chapter 6, Mrs. Robbins said “… Mist’ Starks, please gimme uh lil piece uh meat fur me and mah chillun.”  Jody was on the high class because he provided the Eatonville lamps, post office etc… and he earned a lot of money from this.  The other people were hungry.  This was a difference.  The other proof was spittoon.  Not all the people had a spittoon, so it was the symbol of prosperity.


  •             At the beginning of the novel, men’s dream like looking ships at a distance was told.  In chapter 18, the dialogue between Bohaman boys and Tea Cake was “Indians don’t know much…  De white folks ain’t gone nowhere.  Dey oughta know if it’s dangerous.”.  Tea Cake as a man looked at Indians’ departure at a distance.  There was a coming hurricane and he decided to stay by thinking that white people knew everything right.  Tea Cake did not move.  The nature is controlled by God, so we can think of the nature as a symbol of God.  It was told in the novel when the hurricane appeared “Six eyes were questioning God.”  For example, people forget God sometimes and when they feel hopeless, they rely on God.  Tea Cake should not have waited for other white people’s departure.  He had a mind and he could have acted according to his mind.  However, they understood nature’s power, God’s power, so they started to worry about their lives now.