CliffsNotes Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God

By Megan E. Ash | Go to book overview

Chapter 13

Summary

Janie boards a train in Eatonville and goes to Jacksonville to marry Tea Cake. It leaves too early in the morning for many of the townsfolk to see her depart, but those who do report to the others how beautiful she looked.

Tea Cake is a man of his word: They are quickly married. However, his first act as a new husband is to disappear with $200 of Janie’s money. Janie has visions of her fate being similar to that of Mrs. Tyler, an Eatonville woman who was seduced—and then abandoned—by a younger man; afterwards, she returned to Eatonville in a totally decrepit condition.

After hours of Janie’s fretting and worrying, a smiling and joking Tea Cake finally returns. He explains that he did not run off with another woman and that he never has any intention of doing so. He confesses that when he accidentally spied the money that Janie had brought along as a sort of personal insurance, he couldn’t resist the temptation to throw a huge party for the men who worked on the railroad gangs with him and their wives and friends.

Tea Cake describes the party, making Janie laugh when he tells her about the two dollar admission he charged ugly women. Janie would have gone to the party, she says, if he had come back for her; he didn’t do that, he says, because he thought that she wouldn’t like the people. Janie assures him that she does not “class off.” People are people to her, and she’ll accept his friends.

The money that Tea Cake took from Janie will be replaced through Tea Cake’s skill in gambling. Winning the money, however, involves some risk. When one loser objects to Tea Cake’s pulling out of the game with all of the money, he stabs Tea Cake twice in the back. Janie doctors Tea Cake’s wounds, which are fortunately only superficial. His winnings total more than $300. When his wounds are healed, he

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CliffsNotes Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Table of Contents iii
  • How to Use This Book vi
  • Life and Background of the Author 1
  • Introduction to the Novel 11
  • Critical Commentaries 19
  • Chapter 1 20
  • Chapter 2 24
  • Chapter 3 27
  • Chapter 4 29
  • Chapter 5 32
  • Chapter 6 36
  • Chapter 7 41
  • Chapter 8 43
  • Chapter 9 46
  • Chapter 10 48
  • Chapter 11 50
  • Chapter 12 52
  • Chapter 13 54
  • Chapter 14 57
  • Chapter 15 59
  • Chapter 16 60
  • Chapter 17 62
  • Chapter 18 64
  • Chapter 19 66
  • Chapter 20 69
  • Character Analyses 71
  • Critical Essays 81
  • CliffsNotes Review 89
  • CliffsNotes Resource Center 93
  • Index 95
  • Notes 101
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