Their Eyes Were Watching God

Nature's Role in Their Eyes Were Watching God

"It [the tiny bloom] had called her to come and gaze on a mystery. From barren brown stems to glistening leaf-buds; from the leaf-buds to snowy virginity of bloom. It stirred her tremendously" (13). Zora Neale Hurston, an African-American author, is known for her expressive and imaginative language. Her use of imagery, particularly of nature, is used to stimulate the audience's imagination while communicating deep significance in a novel. The imagery of nature in one of her most famous works, Their Eyes Were Watching God, creates a unique parallel between the two sides of nature: its beauty and its devastation.

Protagonist Janie Crawford's ideal of contentment is shown in Hurston's imagery of a pear tree, which represents nature's beauty. The pear tree represents Janie's idealized views of nature, as it demonstrates her naÃve and romantic character which constantly seeks true love, and her idealism of the harmony in a marriage based upon love as she travels a path of self-discovery throughout the novel. "Oh, to be . . . a tree in bloom! With kissing bees singing of the beginning of the world" (14). Hurston deliberately describes the pear tree in this fashion to show the relation between a...

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