However, by treating Janie as an equal, Tea Cake allows her to grow into an independent woman by listening to her self-expressions. Janie is neither forced into her relationship nor reliant on it as an only way out. Rather, she is attracted to Tea Cake because of what he proves to be through conversing with her. On their first date, Janie “look[s] him over and [gets] thrills from everyone of his good points” (Hurston 96). Before marrying him, Janie allows herself to fall in love with him, firmly clinging on to her vision of the pear tree and her belief that marriage is a loving union between two people that share a mutual attraction.
During Janie and Tea Cake’s first encounter Tea Cake makes the statement that, “Ah don’t need no pocket-full uh money to ride de train lak uh women. When Ah takes uh notion Ah rides anyhow- money or no money”. (page 97). Janie is caught by surprise and a new side of Janie is revealed. Even friends of Janie refer to Tea Cake as “Dat long-legged Tea Cake ain’t got doodly squat.
Logan is Janie’s first stop to becoming a strong, independent woman. She stands up to him when she leaves with Joe, taking another step to a better life. Joe’s forcing of Janie to be just an object and symbol of his political power causes Janie to rebel and spring up from her lowly position. This prepares Janie for her next husband, Tea Cake, whom she will eventually not be completely dependent on. This, in my opinion, is one of her greatest achievement.
Janie’s forced and strained marriage to Logan Killicks changed Janie into a more outspoken, independent woman in the long run, while her marriage to Joe Starks made her a confident and carefree woman in the end. Finally, Janie finds the true love she’s been searching for in Teacake, her third husband. Teacake allows Janie to be who she wants to be; a carefree and happy woman. Janie’s emotional and physical awakening under the pear blossom tree was finally fulfilled with Teacake. In addition, Janie’s character fully blossoms and develops within the arms of
She had made that decision on her own, but she was pressured into that decision by her Nanny. In order to commit to Logan, Janie had to drill it into her head that in time she would learn to love him. Even though time went by she still did not love him. When Janie confronted her Nanny, about her non-existing love for Logan, she told Janie
She does not care that he is nearly twenty years younger than she is, or that other people do not agree with their relationship. “Another thing, Joe Starks hadn’t been dead but nine months and here she goes sashaying off to a picnic in pink linen”(110). Janie does not care what other people think of her, she just wants to achieve her dreams and be happy with her independence. She is happy with Tea Cake and trusts that he is not interested in her only for her money. Tea Cake shows Janie that she does not need a man to control her and tell her what to
When Janie was with Teacake she felt like she was finally living for herself, and she was finally happy. Teacake gave Janie the tender love and companionship that Janie wanted all along, and the two were inseparable. When Teacake passed Janie grieved, and she felt no remorse or regret. She was just happy that she got the chance to share the experience with him. Janie and I share the same beliefs when it comes to what marriage should be based on.
The book Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston, does deal with race relations but the primary topic of the book is the difference between men and women. This subject is introduced immediately: "Now, women forget all those things they don't want to remember, and remember everything they don't want to forget. The dream is the truth. Then they act and do things accordingly." The story details the protagonists life story including three marriages, it is only at the end of the book that Janie can be herself and feels complete.
In the Grimm’s version of Cinderella (628-633), the day of the wedding Ashputtle begs to go. Her stepmother dumps a bowlful of lentils in the ashes and says that she will be allowed to go if she can pick up the lentils from the ashes in two hours. Ashputtle asks two doves to help her pick up the lentils. They help her, but once she is done, the stepmother again throws lentils in the ashes. (629).
The tension between outward conformity and inward questioning is the very heart of Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston. The main character Janie must journey through life in order to find love and her place in this world. Janie transforms over the course of the novel from someone that conforms to others to the person that she truly is and wants to be. In order to do this, she needs to overcome pressures not only from her grandmother and husbands, but also the expectations of society. Janie’s Grandma plays an important outward influence from the very beginning.