Thursday, March 5, 2009

Tea Cake's Fate and God?

"Ah'm never tuh fuhgit dem eyes. He wuzn't nothin' all over but pure hate," (167). What exactly is God's reason for condemning Janie to the wrath of a hurricane and the transformation of her husband to a hate consumed animal? Every decision made by Tea Cake has led him to the path of a shorter life. At the beginning of the hurricane Motor Boat urged Tea Cake to stay in the house and sleep the storm out. Tea Cake refused and dragged Janie with him. Unfortunately Janie gets caught up in the wave with a rabid dog and Tea Cake dives in to save her getting bit. Afterwards Janie pleaded that Tea Cake receive medical attention. However he refused, casting the injury off as a temporary annoyance. Why the stubbornness Tea Cake? He seems to be avoiding something all the time. He also refuses to go to a hospital. Is this because he is afraid of the white man? Perhaps he just distrusts them. Whatever the case may be, his decisions led him to the sad ending of his life, shot by his own true love.
"Saw the ferocious look in his eyes and went mad with fear as she had done in the water that time," (184). Like the rabid dog Tea Cake has lost all sensibility and all that remains is the urge to kill. I can only think Hurston intended Tea Cake to die this way and deny the happy ending for Janie for a reason. In both situations Janie is the one being targeted by the rabid inhabitants. Janie is seeing the hatred that is in God. The hurricane represents an expurgation of rural Florida. Tea Cake is the last to be cleansed when he dies and all returns to normalcy. Janie returns to Eatonville a refined woman. I think the relationship between Janie and Tea Cake fails, even after two other marriages, because she is not supposed to spend the rest of her life with them but to learn something. I think she learns more about love and experiences the dream she dreamt under the pear tree. God has guided her on the journey and I almost feel like it was all a planned destiny. Like we discussed in class, Janie does accept this and that she is in the hands of God which is why she accepts Tea Cake's death and is able to live peacefully.

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