Their Eyes Were Watching God

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Vocabulary Ch 5-6
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saunter: to walk leisurely; to stroll
incredulous: skeptical; unbelieving
proffer: to put before a person for acceptance; to
offer
discomfiture: frustration of hopes or plans
tangible: real; capable of being touched
Chapter 5 & 6 Objectives
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Dramatize elements of humor
Trace how a motif evolves and develops
significance
Analyze effect of setting on characters
Chapter 5: On the train the next day, Joe didn’t
make many speeches with rhymes to her
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“nobody else’s wife to rank with her. She must look on herself
as the bell-cow, the other women were the gang”(41).
Janie was dressed in “wine-colored red”(41).
“Mrs. Mayor Starks”(43).
“Joe spoke out without giving her a chance to say
anything…that took the boom off of things”(43).
“she went down the road behind him that night feeling
cold”(43).
“A feeling of coldness and fear took hold of her. She felt far
away from things and lonely”(46).
“Janie soon began to feel the impact of awe and envy
against her sensibilities” “…wife of the Mayor was not just
another woman”(46).
Noteworthy Ch 5 (Joe Starks)
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“his legs wide apart, asking questions and smoking a
cigar”(39). “biting down on cigars”(47).
“big house” and “cowed the town” “he had a bow-down
command on his face”(47).
“He loves obedience out everybody under de sound of his
voice” “He’s whirlwind among breezes” “He’s got uh throne in
de seat of his pants” “Showin’ off his learnin’ “You kin feel a
switch in his hand when he’s talkin’ to yuh” (49).
“…invested with his new dignity”(43).
“uh man dat changes everything, but nothin’ don’t change
him”(49).
“basketful of feelings good and bad about Joe’s positions
and possesions”(50).
Noteworthy Ch 5 - Antimetabole
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“They bowed down to him rather, because he was all of
these things, and then again he was all of these things
because the town bowed down to him”(50).
Noteworthy Ch 5
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Figurative language:
“incredulous laughter burst out their eyes and
leaked from the corners of their mouths”(37)
“king uh Jerusalem”(39) “queen uh England”(42)
and Isaac and Rebecca at de well”(42).
“let the light penetrate inside of yuh, and let it
shine, let it shine, let it shine”(45).
“Any man who walks in the way of power and
property is bound to meet hate”(48).
Noteworthy Ch 5 - Idioms
“Mah britches is just as long as his”(35).
“Ah’m uh bitch’s baby round lady people”(36).
“cuss a cat on without gittin’ yo’ mouf full of hair”(37).
“cut de monkey”(42).
“a handle to wind up the tongue with”(48).
“give the devil his due”(49).
Close Reading Activity Ch 5-6
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Do this assignment with a partner
Write a question for each level of questioning:
Literal: What does Joe Starks say when the audience
requests that Janie speak?
Interpretive: Based on Joe Stark’s statements about Janie
speaking, what can the reader infer?
Universal: How does society define male and female
roles?
Chapter 6: Every morning the world flung itself
over and exposed the town to the sun.
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Figurative language:
“passed around pictures of themselves”;”crayon
enlargements”(51).
“get her face straight”(57).
“The porch laughed”(53).
“wringing and twisting like a hen on a hot brick”(58).
Characterization of Joe
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“Joe had forbidden her [Janie] to indulge [in mule
talk]”(53).
“He didn’t want her talking after such trashy people”(54).
“mules make a mighty big man outa you”(58).
“dat makes you lak uh king uh something”(58).
“de mayor’s wife is somethin different”(60).
“he ought to box her jaws”(62).
“Somebody got to think for women and chillun and
chicken and cows. “…they sure don’t think none
theirselves”(71).
Joe
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“He wanted her submission and he’d keep on fighting until
he felt he had it”(71).
“When I see one thing Ah understands ten. You see ten
things and don’t understand one”(71). (antimetabole)
Janie
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“The rock[Joe’s ideas, wants and needs] she was battered
against”(54).
“Ah knows a few things, and women folks thinks sometimes
too!”(71).
“It’s so easy to make yo’self out God Almighty when you
ain’t got nothin’ tuh strain against but women and
chickens”(75).
“So gradually, she pressed her teeth together and
learned to hush”(71).
“She wasn’t petal-open anymore with him”(71).
Mule Heaven and Funerals
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“mule-angels flying” “green corn and cool water, a
pasture of pure bran with a river of molasses” “No
Matt Bonner” “mule-angels have people to ride
on”(61).
“Can look down into hell and see the devil plowing
Matt Bonner all day long in the hell-hot sun…”(61).
“ruler [of the buzzards] in a tree where he sat”(61).
Trees
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“Joe piled fodder under the big tree near the
porch”(58).
“found him under the big tree on his rawbony back with
all four feet up in the air”(59).
“the ruler in a tree where he sat”(61).
Tall Tales, Hyperbole and Myths
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“it was a contest in hyperbole and carried on for no other
reason”(63).
“Nature got so high in un black hen she got tuh lay uh
white egg”(65).
He was a man wid salt in him. He wouldn’t dig potatoes,
and he wouldn’t rake hay: He wouldn’t take a whipping,
and he wouldn’t run away”(67).
“Daisy is walking a drum tune”(67). “It must be recess in
heben if St. Peter is lettin’ his angels out lak dis”(68).
Look at other examples of hyperbole on page 68 and 69.
Extended Metaphors
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Page 71 beginning with: “So gradually she put her teeth
together and learned to hush…”
Page 72 beginning with: “Janie stood where he left her…”
Summary of Chapter 5 & 6
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Why does Starks assume a position of power so
quickly?
What does Starks reference to Janie as a “bell
cow” tell you about Stark’s attitude toward women?
Toward Janie in particular?
What important insight into Starks do Scott and
Hicks give at the end of Chapter 5?
What does wearing a head rag stand for in Starks’
mind and in Janie’s?
Chapter 5 & 6 continued
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When Janie thinks about the state of her marriage,
what conclusion does she reach? Why?
How does Janie assert her independence from
Starks?
Chapter 6 Activity
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As an anthropologist, Hurston collected stories,
conversations, and other aspects of oral tradition
that she then infused into her writing. As you read
Chapter 6, watch for elements of humor such as tall
tales/ hyperbole, parody, and riddles.
Find an example of one of the above to share with
the class after we read Chapter 6.

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