Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Setting & Location: The store

In “Their Eyes Were Watching God,” there have been many different locations, but one that keeps coming up is the town store. The town store is the center of town, where everything goes on. Everyone gets their food there and most men come and sit outside to gossip. The town store is kind of like home base for Eatonville, it’s the popular place to be. Janie works at this town store, but seems not to enjoy it much.

Whenever Janie references the store or thinks about it, it always has a negative light to it. In a way the store is kind of like imprisonment for Janie. She is forced to work there by Joe and she is always being blazoned of her mistakes in front of the townspeople by him. He tends to demean her because she is a woman when she messes up or doesn’t do something up to his standards at the store. Joe kind of puts her in the store to keep her out of his hair because he is petulant with her. He keeps her from partaking in events and talking with the other townspeople at the store. For an example when the towns people start to use “a side of the world for a canvas, Joe would hustle her off inside the store to sell something” (54). Janie hated how Joe always demands her to the store that “she had come to hate the inside of that store” and “the store itself kept her with a sick headache” (54). Another thing that Janie hated about the store was she was forced to keep her hair tied up. When it comes to the store for Janie, the tone of the story becomes kind of depressing and gloomy because she looks at it with hatred.

The store is not depressing for all, just for Janie. Most people enjoy the town store. It’s kind of the place to be when there are no events going on in town. The men like to sit out on the porch and talk about everything. In particular they like to gossip. The men also like to play checkers there too. Joe Starks, when he is there, is always friendly to all the customers. Overall, the town store is kind of like the towns hangout spot. When it comes to others besides Janie, the town store brings a brighter mood to the story. Everyone jokes around and has a good time. The tone of the story is different when certain characters are mentioned at the store.

1 comment:

  1. The reason why Janie hates the store is most likely because it's not at all the lifestyle she wanted. When she eloped with Joe Starks, she had a different life in mind than being a mayor's wife. Keep in mind that Janie has a highly romanticized notion of marriage and anticipates action where there is none to be found. She complains to Joe that him being the mayor is inconvenient and that she wishes he would spend more time with her. The store is a constant reminder that she is a caged bird.