The way the author characterizes the main characters in Zora Neale Hurston‘s Their Eyes Were Watching God and Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried shows how people in any situation find friendship and love. Many of the characters in Their Eyes Were Watching God are defined by their thoughts and opinions on women, especially Janie’s three husbands. Logan and Jody don’t consider women to be thinking or feeling humans, and both of these men think they have the right to hurt a woman who they think is misbehaving. Tea cake, however, values Janie’s personality and company. He also feels the duty of being a husband- protect her from danger, etc. This makes it easy for Janie to fall for Tea cake and his qualities rather than Logan and Jody qualities. Tim’s situation though is much more different. He is forced to go to war and fight with people he has never met before. He must learn to trust these men because thats all he has. Friendships form and his greatest is with a American Indian named Kiowa. He is thoughtful, respects the Vietnamese, is not a coward, and he even has a sense of humor. Tim grows fond of this and whenever he needs something, Kiowa is the first to be there for him. This builds a best friendship even though both are too manly to admit it. Tim and Janie both run into obstacles but use friendship and love to get through them.
Janie is on a quest for a filling in her love life. Of Janie’s three marriages, Logan and Jody provide her with a sense of security and status. However, only her union with Teacake flourishes into true love. Logan Killicks could not give this kind of love to Janie and he may not have even loved her. To him, Janie was just another working set of hands and treating her almost like another man. He was inconsiderate of her feelings, her hopes, and her aspirations. “ ‘He don’t even never mention nothin pretty.’ She began to cry” (24). Logan can not fill her need for love. He shows no tendencies to even try and achieve Janie’s concept...
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