Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #4: Why Were Their Eyes Watching God?
Titles are the reader’s first introduction to a novel, hinting at its content and, possibly, its theme.
Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #1: Nature Symbolism in “Their Eyes Were Watching God”Their Eyes Were Watching God is a novel that is brimming with references to nature.
Janie, in particular, has a particular affection for nature, and it holds special meaning for her.
You might, for example, want to choose one of the first passages about nature, that of Janie beneath the pear tree (pp. Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #2: Answering Rhetorical Questions in “Their Eyes Were Watching God”A rhetorical question is a query that is articulated but which does not necessarily expect an answer.
There are numerous rhetorical questions that the characters in “Their Eyes Were Watching God” ask of themselves and each other. Considering the novel “Their Eyes Were Watching God” as a whole, which of these rhetorical questions might you be able to answer as the reader who has the entire story?All quotes from “Their Eyes Were Watching God” by Zora Neale Hurston contain page numbers as well. " (11)“So de white man throw down de load and tell de nigger man tuh pick it up.Look at the bottom of the page to identify which edition of the text they are referring to.“She was seeking confirmation of the voice and vision, and everywhere she found and acknowledged answers. He pick it up because he have to, but he don’t tote it. De nigger woman is de mule un de world so fur as Ah can see." (14)“Ah wanted to preach a great sermon about colored women sittin’ on high, but they wasn’t no pulpit for me.Here Nanny had taken the biggest thing God ever made, the horizon…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." (85)“Two things everybody’s got tuh do fuh theyselves.They got tuh go tuh God, and they got tuh find out about livin’ fuh theyselves." (183)“Here was peace. Pulled it from around the waist of the world and draped it over her shoulder. She called in her soul to come and see." (184) Reference: Hurston, Zora Neale.The animal with the greatest symbolic charge in this novel is the mule.Mentioned frequently throughout “Their Eyes Were Watching God”, the mule obviously represents the carrier of heavy loads and burdens, but it can also—and does—represent stubborn resistance.A personal answer for all other creations except herself. Freedom found me wid a baby daughter in mah arms, so Ah said Ah’d take a broom and a cook pot and throw up a highway through de wilderness for her." (15)“So Janie waited a bloom time, and a green time and an orange time.But when the pollen again gilded the sun and sifted down on the world she began to stand around the gate and expect things. She didn’t know exactly." (23)“From now on until death she was going to have flower dust and springtime sprinkled over everything. Her old thoughts were going to come in handy now, but new words would have to be made and said to fit them." (31)“Sometimes God gits familiar wid us womenfolks too and talks His inside business." (70)“All dis bowin’ down, all dis obedience under yo’ voice—dat ain’t whut Ah rushed off down de road tuh find out about you." (82)“It was all according to the way you see things.Which of the rhetorical questions remain unanswerable? What is the significance of asking questions, and is it always important to find answers?Thesis Statement / Essay Topic #3: The Symbol of the Mule in “Their Eyes Were Watching God” by Zora Neale Hurston In addition to the frequent references to nature, certain animals have symbolic weight in Their Eyes Were Watching God.