Their Eyes Were Watching God

“Finally out of Nanny’s talk and her own conjectures she made a sort of comfort for herself. Yes, she would love Logan after they were married. She could see no way for it to come about, but Nanny and the old folks had said it, so it must be so. Husbands and wives always loved each other, and that was what marriage meant. It was just so. Janie felt glad of the thought, for then it wouldn’t seem so destructive and mouldy. She wouldn’t be lonely anymore.”

Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God. 1937. New York: Harper Perennial, 2013. p. 21

This passage exemplifies Janie’s innocence and naivety. She blindly believes Nanny’s rigid views about marriage and love. In order to alleviate her fears, Janie is able to convince herself that love and marriage are synonymous.

TEWWG

“Here Nanny had taken the biggest thing God ever made, the horizon-for no matter how far a person can go the horizon is still way beyond you- and pinched it in to such a little bit of a thing that she could tie it about her granddaughter’s neck tight enough to choke her.”

Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God. 1937. New York: Harper Perennial, 2013. p. 85

Nanny had taken life and love in all it’s grandeur and manipulated it to suit her own wishes for what she wanted Janie’s life to be like and in the process, suffocated her.