Their Eyes Were Watching God Part 7: The Porch
In Their Eyes Were Watching God, the porch was the place to be. Watch the video to learn more about the porch as a symbol, and see if they ever installed a disco ball. Any place that’s the place to be needs a disco ball.
|Literature||Their Eyes Were Watching God|
because everything is so dense-packed.
It's very different from a porch in the Midwest on a farm,
where the next neighbor is two miles away
and many acres of corn away.
So a porch in Harlem is this weird
where you can converse in a normal voice with your neighbors
three flats on either side
and probably across the street.
Certainly at night when there's no traffic.
And things were quieter back then.
How does that work?
Choosing the porch as
the hub of her circle
was probably no accident.
It's not. The porch is like a symbol for community.
It's where people got together to talk about everything.
All of these interactions that we see throughout the book -
many or most of them happen on porches,
ike the hyperbole contest
and all the storytelling
and folk tales and all that.
Those happen on the porch, so it makes sense that Janie is also telling
her own story on a porch.
The porch really becomes a character in its own.
It's personified throughout the book.
It kind of takes actions.
Phoebe at one point says that she feels like
the porch is pelting her back with questions.
And when Joe
prohibits Janie from
talking on the porch at one point,
again suppressing her voice,
it's like she's being removed from society altogether.
It's not just that she's being removed from the porch.
It's that she's being removed from society.
So the porch really is a symbol
of a bigger society.
[ pen writing ]
What does the porch represent?
How is the porch treated
as a character?
Yeah, that's a porch as a character.