“Untouchable “

“…and had been caught by the glamour of the ‘white man’s life’,” (3).

I picked out this specific line in the beginning of the book because it shows immedtialy that there will be racial tensions within the novel

Narration Post

In Hurston’s novel, the narration acts as a summary for the dialogue. For example, if Janie says something in their dialect which could be hard for the reader to understand, the narrator would kind of sum up what Janie had said a couple lines or paragraphs later. In the beginning of chapter 2 when Janie realizes she is black, on page 10 the narrator says, “So she went on thinking back to her young years and explaining them to her friend in soft, easy phrases while all around the house, the night time put on flesh and blackness.”

“Their Eyes Were Watching God”

“‘Aw, aw! Ah’m colored!'” (Hurston 9)

This line, and the most beginning of chapter 2 is so interesting because it shows that Janie does not really know who she is since she was around white kids so much. She did not realize that she was any different until she finally saw herself in a picture. I thought this was sad because she thought she was like every else until it was pointed out that she was different, just because of her skin color.


“And her slim body, white as the ash as black flesh after flame,” (Toomer 38).

Although very ambiguous, I found this line interesting. When Esther is first introduced, it is made very clear that she is white. But the last part of this quote is the most interesting about the ash after the flame. Immediately I thought of a fireplace and what everything looks like the morning after burning wood. It does have a white look to it, but never a pale white, always a gray-ish, so I am wondering if maybe this has to do with being in the middle of black and white, referring to skin tone, and something deeper than just what something looks like after a flame.

“The Maltese Falcon”

I found it strange that the term satan kept coming up in descriptions for Samuel. When it happened on the first page, I thought it was just a simile, a weird one, but nothing more than that. And then it was used again a couple pages later, and I can’t help but think if maybe it is foreshadowing for something bigger.

“As I Lay Dying”

In these last 100 pages or so, I noticed a lot more italics than there were previously. For example, from pages 180-181 in Darl’s section, there is at least one sentence per paragraph in italics. And then on page 196, there is almost an entire paragraph in italics about how Vardaman’s mother is a fish. I found this interesting because it changes the style of the writing and the narration.

“As I Lay Dying”

“It was the sweetest thing I ever saw,” (Faulkner 21).

I found this line interesting because the narrator just jumps in (media res). Without reading further, it leaves the reader open to many questions, such as what is this sweet thing? Is it a gesture? I have noticed that almost all chapters open in media res, which I find cool, but can also be confusing.

“A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man”

“He had no temptations to sin mortally,” (Joyce 127).

I found this particular line interesting because throughout the whole book the idea of sin is very apparent. But by saying the word “mortally” I think it has a different affect. Why is that word added? If you are sinning, obviously it is morally because only humans can sin.

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“They all laughed again. Stephen tried to laugh with them. He felt his whole body hot and confused in a moment,” (Joyce 11).

This one quote has to do with Stephen’s answer to a question on whether or not he kisses his mother before bed every night. These couple sentences show Stephen’s insecurity, and this was interesting to me because he is so concerned with what these other boys are thinking, and whether or not the answer to their question was right or not. Furthermore, in a couple pages later, there is also the quote:

“His mother kissed him. Was that right?” (Joyce 16).

Through his insecurity, these boys basically made him rethink everything he knows. Even though he does not know exactly what the boys thought might have been the right answer, just the fact that they laughed, made him question himself, thus making him question whether or not it is okay for him to kiss his mother, and vice versa.

“The Middle Years”

“To these things the young man with the book was still more clearly indifferent; lingering, credulous, absorbed, he was an object of envy to an observer from whose connection with literature all such artlessness had faded,” (James 610).

I found this specific passage interesting because of the way the speaker is portraying him as a reader. The line that really struck me was “he was an object of envy.” Reading this line, in my head I pictured a man completely devoted and enveloped in his book, so much that the outside world is totally irrelevant. From then, you can see other people observing this man, probably wondering why he is so focused on this imaginary world. It really shows the speaker’s appreciation for literature and how important it can be to someone.