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Their Eyes Were Watching God - the Great Gatsby

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Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald are two great novels that I enjoyed reading. Although the two are different stories, they also share a few similarities, both within the actual stories and also with their main characters.

Both Janie and Gatsby have common facets that influence their pasts, society and how they are able to mold themselves into the outcomes. Both characters have elements from their pasts which add to their mindsets of wanting to change the way their lives are progressing and form them into something from which they will benefit from. Also, both characters try attempt to find true love, Janie managed to find hers with Tea Cake while Gatsby does not. Society also plays a major role in each novel, positively in one and negatively in the other.

Their Eyes Were Watching God is about the life of Janie Crawford, a girl of mixed black and white heritage, probably around the 1920's. As an adolescent, Janie sees a bee pollinating a flower in her backyard pear tree and becomes obsessed with finding true love. From there, the novel documents her emotional growth and maturity through three marriages. It is also about a life marked with poverty, trials, and purpose.

F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby tells of the story of the wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, of lavish parties on Long Island at a time when 'The New York Times' noted "gin was the national drink and sex the national obsession". The Great Gatsby is also set around the 1920s.

First and foremost Zora Neale's novel is a story of Janie's search for spiritual enlightenment and a strong sense of her own identity. When we first and last see Janie, she is alone. The novel is not the story of her search for a partner but rather that of her quest for a secure sense of independence. Janie's development along the way can be charted by studying her use of language and her relationship to her own voice. At the end of her journey, Janie returns to Eatonville a strong and proud woman, but at the beginning of her story, she is unsure of who she is or how she wants to live. She then tells her story to Pheoby to quench her curiosity, not only Phoeby's but also the rest of the people who were almost 'dying' to know the truth about what had happened to their late mayor's wife. Their thirst for answers ends up creating numerous rumors which Janie therefore answers by telling Phoeby her story which is the whole novel.

Jay Gatsby is a young man, around thirty years old, rose from an impoverished childhood in rural North Dakota to become extremely wealthy. However, the road to his wealth was achieved by participating in organized crime, including distributing illegal alcohol and trading in stolen securities. From his early youth, Gatsby despised poverty and longed for wealth and sophistication--he dropped out

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