Their eyes were watching God
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I think that the mystery of Janie walking through Etonville provides a sense of conflict. Janie's individuality and sexuality are on full display. Her hair is s thick, and healthy: "the great rope of black hair swinging to her waist and unraveling in the wind like a plume." The women are envious of her; they hope she might fall to their level some day. Men are attracted to her but rebuke her for her overt sexuality at the same time.