There Eyes Were Watching God-Rhetorical Analysis

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Passage: Chapter 20 Page 183-184

In the novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston creates a sense of closer and fulfillment in this particular passage by employing both auditory and visual repetition/ imagery, comparisons with metaphors and personification to demonstrate that peace and amity are both obtainable through love even after going through the toughest of circumstances.

Hurston’s method of utilizing repetition conveys her message about the end of Janie’s journey and the peace that Janie has found in the things around her. Hurston’s specific use of visual repetition—“pine tree,” “light”—is used to create a connection with the reader and to help the reader to visualize Janie’s experience and to enter into the thoughts of Janie (lines 2, 6, 14, 16). The explicit imagery provided in the third paragraph of how “Tea cake came prancing around [Janie] where she was and sang the song of the sigh flew out of the window and lit in the top of the pine trees” not only shows the reader what Janie is thinking but also helps to convey the message that Janie has found peace with her life and Tea Cake. Hurston also uses auditory repetition with three words—“commenced,” “sings,” and “sob” (lines 10-12). This repetition brings to life the emotions Janie has gone through and the ups and downs through the positive and negatives uses of the words. Overall the repetition of imagery provided a good insight into how Janie came to terms with the death of Tea Cake.

Throughout this passage Hurston makes several comparisons using metaphors and personification to suggest something that does not quite make sense but explains the emotions and feelings that Janie is experiencing and also demonstrates the love between two people. The effect of Hurston’s use of personification of the wind on the trees and window is to make the wind come to life; it exemplifies Janie’s state of mind. The “wind picking at the pine trees” and the “wind […] broomed out all the fetid...
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