“‘Wha-whut’s dat you say, Janie? You must be out yo’ head.’
‘Naw, Ah ain’t outa mah head neither.’
‘You must be. Talkin’ any such language as dat.’ (Hurtston, 79)
Hurston, Zora Neale. Their Eyes Were Watching God (New York: Harper Perennial, 2006)
In this scene, we see Janie standing up for herself, something we have not seen in the novel. We also begin to see her strength as a character and as a women during this time. Its also a time to wonder what the consequence will be for Janie for speaking to a man this way.
“Wind is in the cane. Come along. Cane leaves swaying, rusty with talk, Scratching choruses above the guinea’s squawk, Wind is in the cane. Come along” (Toomer, 11).
Toomer, Jean. Cane. Dover Publications, Inc., 2019.
Jean Toomer opens up many of his chapters with a small poem containing information about the following chapter. However, I noticed how when Toomer does open his chapters with these small poems, there is a lot of repetition each time he does this. For example, ‘Come along’ and ‘Wind is in the Cane’ is repeated two times in this short poem and if we look at other poems before the start of new chapters, we see similar types of repetition.
” I think he found it early this morning, but, of course, he didn’t think of telling the Throgmortons just at first. She came up to me just before lunch so tiresome, I had to ask her to stay. Fortunately, I was alone. I don’t mind being bored myself, but I hate having my guests bored .” (Sayers, 12).
Sayers, Dorothy L. Whose Body? Harper and Brothers, 1923
I found this entire opening conversation to be somewhat odd and intriguing. His questions and interest in the case almost make the reader suspicious of him. I think Sayers’s form in this novel is interesting, as she slowly introduces the main conflict with a conversation between two people who are not entirely close to the victim.
“‘A thousand dollars wouldn’t be enough in my store and ten cents wouldn’t be enough’, I said. ‘You take my advice and go home and tell your pa or your brothers if you have any or the first man you come to in the road.'” (Faulkner, 202).
It’s clear that Dewey is facing inequality as she is not allowed to go to a pharmacy and get a drug that will terminate her pregnancy. This inequality that Dewey is facing could change the future of her life, and it should be up to her whether or not she wants to keep this baby, not Moseley.
“For it was the middle of June. The War was over, except for some one like Mrs. Foxcroft at the Embassy last night eating her heart out because that nice boy was killed and now the old Manor House must go to a cousin; or Lady Bexborough who opened a bazaar, they said, with the telegram in her hand, John her favorite, killed; but it was over; thank Heaven – over” (Woolf, 4).
Woolf, Virginia. Mrs. Dalloway. Hancourt, 2002.
Throughout the novel, we see how the past of the war catches up to the people of London, bringing back past traumas. At the beginning of the novel, we see how the tragedies of the war are still following the people of London. We start off by reading about an airplane flying above London creating this sort of anxiety for the survivors of the war as it brings up traumatic events they witnessed in the past. We can also relate this to mental illness in a way, as with most parts of this novel, and identify that these characters have PTSD.
“Her name sprang to my lips at moments in strange prayers and praises which I myself did not understand. My eyes were often full of tears (I could not tell why) and at times a flood from my heart seemed to pour itself out into my bosom. I thought little of the future. I did not know whether I would ever speak to her or not or, if I spoke to her, how I could tell her of my confused adoration” (Joyce, 35).
James Joyce. Dubliners. Grant Richards 1914.
The narrator expresses his confused feelings for a girl he barely knows. However, the narrator does know that just by how he feels whenever he sees her, he can not help but feel some type of way, perhaps love, towards this girl. We can see how even her name makes his heart stop, and he is confused by these feelings. We can also see how he doesn’t know the future, by this the narrator means he doesn’t know if he will talk to her or if he will ever get a chance to be with her.
“He was tired enough when he reached it, and for a moment he was disappointed; he was better, of course, but better, after all, than what? He should never again, as at one or two great moments of the past, be better than himself.”
Henry James, The Middle Years, (Henry James: Complete Stories 1892-1898, 335-55).
Why is he, Dencombe, tired and disappointed? Was he injured in some way and why does he believe he will never be the better version of himself in the past?