Sex triggers the protagonist’s interest in love; she is fascinated by both the bodily pleasure triggered by sex as well as its implications for new life and spiritual union. The protagonist’s view of sex is strongly associated with love; she sees sex as a blissful expression of love and feels that sex without love is practically a desecration of the sacred emotion. In stark contrast, many other characters see sex as a source of shame or a form of violence and domination. A woman should protect herself against sex at all costs unless legitimately married. This negative notion of sex is one that the protagonist battles against.
In Janie’s mind, sex is inherently about love.
In Janie’s mind, sex, like marriage, isn’t necessarily about love.