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Characters in Their Eyes Were Watching God

            Zora Neale Hurston was an American folklorist, anthropologist, and author. Of Hurston's four novels and more than 50 published short stories, plays, and essays, she is best known for her 1937 novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. Love plays a very important role in Hurston's "Their Eyes were watching God". Hurston's best novel describes the life of Janie, a black woman at the turn of the century. Janie is raised by her Grandmother and spends her life traveling with different men until she finally returns home. Believing that she is on a quest for someone on whom to lean. Although she achieves a somewhat satisfying life, Janie's quest is for independence rather than satisfaction. Janie spent her days looking for love, happiness, and freedom. She thought of love just as she thought of the elements of springtime. .
             Meanwhile, Janie searches for love and she gets married three times. Each marriage helps Janie finds her own wishes and goals in life. Janie gets her definition of love from "nature," when she witnesses the "marriage" between the pear tree and the bee. Now that she knows what she is searching for, Janie is determined to find it, and she will settle for nothing less. Yet, she doesn't find her definition of love until she is about forty years of age. "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 moldy. She wouldn't be lonely anymore.But anyhow Janie went on inside to wait for love to begin. The new moon had been up and down three times before she got worried in mind"(Ch. 3). .
             Janie feels that after she marries Logan, she will somehow wake up one day and love him. Some might read this as a defensive process. It might be something to help her explain the obvious negligence of being forced to marry someone she doesn't love.

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