Their Eyes Were Watching God Judgement Essay

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Mahalia Bergeron

Judgments All Around
We, as humans, often make negative judgments when anger and our insecurities are triggered in a situation. A judgment is an opinion formed after some deliberation or consideration of someone or something. In Their Eyes Were Watching God, written by Zora Neale Hurston, the judgments made by the characters in the story are frequently based on their anger and insecurities. Many examples of judgment are spread throughout the book. In the early fifties through the late seventies, people appear to be racially judgmental when they are insecure and angered by the change in their environment. Judgments seem to be all around us and are a way to express feelings.

In Their Eyes Were Watching God, the anger and insecurities of the characters are the causes of the judgments made. The book starts off with a group of ladies sitting on a porch talking amongst each other about Janie. Their envy for her is obvious when Janie is described as quite the attractive girl. The men of the town eyed her up and down, and the women could see that. “What she doin coming back here in dem overhalls?… Betcha he off wid some gal so young she ain’t even got no hairs - why she don’t stay in her class?” (2) Another example of judgment in the story is Janie’s late husband, Joe Starks. He constantly judges Janie and forms a completely different opinion in his head of her than what she truly is. His sometimes hidden anger and insecurities about his own body and appearance triggers the judgmental relationship Janie and Joe have. “Because he began to talk about her age all the time, as if he didn’t want her to stay young while he grew old,” (77). After Joe Starks dies, Janie meets Tea Cake and the town takes notice of their growing relationship. They also notice the age difference and how Tea Cake is years younger than Janie. The people of the town judge Janie and Tea Cake’s relationship because of their underlying anger. They all predicted that Tea Cake...
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