Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Hero's Janie

I think that of the books we've read, Their Eyes Were Watching God is tied to the Hero's Journey the most obviously. That's all I have to say.
Just kidding... here are the stages of the monomyth as I see them.

1. Ordinary World

Janie's world with her grandomther before step 2. We don't learn too much about it, but it is probably dull and monotonous. With lots of child abuse.

2. Call to Adventure

Janie's revelation under the pear tree. She realizes what makes her truly happy: finding true love with a man.

3. Refusal of the Call

Janie's grandmother leads her away from her ideal of true love and towards her own ideal of security. Janie ends up marrying Logan Killicks and thus refusing the call. She continues to refuse the call when she marries Joe because she never loves him completely.

4. Meeting the Mentor

Janie's mentor is Tea Cake. He treats her as an equal and they truly love each other. Basically, he shows Janie the way to fulfilling her lifelong dream.

5. Crossing the Threshhold

When Janie leaves Eatonville with Tea Cake, she crosses the threshhold. She is unable to return to her old life and finally enters her dream world.
6. Tests, allies and enemies
Janie and Tea Cake encounter several tests of their love and trust. For example, Tea Cake runs away with her money and Janie is afraid he will not return. Tea Cake is also jealous of Janie at certain points, and vice versa. They meet allies who accept their poor-rich/ old-young/ dark-light marriage in the Everglades, such as Motorboat. There are also enemies who dislike their unusual marriage, such as Ms. Taylor.
7. Approach innermost cave
Janie and Tea Cake have a happy life on the Muck, but little do they know a hurricane is approaching. They do not take the advice of others like the Indians and soon are caught in the storm.
8. Ordeal
"The lake is comin'!" Janie and Tea Cake must struggle for their lives as the hurricane rages. Janie faces a rabid dog, and Tea Cake saves her. At the end of the ordeal, Janie is exhausted but alive.
9. Reward
After surviving the storm, Janie finds a new peace of mind and a state of accepting God's will. Although she doesn't truly realize it yet, she is willing and able to do God's will and accepts her life for what it is.
10. The road back
With the muck virtually destroyed, Janie and Tea Cake are stuck in the hard, judgemental world of the town. Janie realizes that her experiences in the Everglades were not meant to last.
11. Resurrection
Janie faces death again when a rabid Tea Cake comes at her with the intent to kill her. She must use her acceptance of her fate and God's will to do what is necessary: kill her true love.
12. Return with elixir
Janie brings her knowledge of God, fate, and love back to Eatonville and begins to share it with Phoeby.

1 comment:

  1. I hated this piece of crap book but all I have to say is that men who respect their wives as equals don't beat them to prove they own them.