How does Janie's grandmother treat her like an object rather than a woman in Their Eyes Were Watching God?

Janie’s grandmother treats her as an object rather than a woman in regard to Janie’s marriage. When Nanny sees her kissing Johnny Taylor, she informs Janie that she had already arranged for her to marry Logan Killicks. Refusing to consider Janie’s objections, Nanny believes that she has the right to make this choice for her teenage granddaughter.

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Nanny’s objectification of her granddaughter is evident through her decision about Janie’s marriage. As the older Janie reminisces about her childhood and adolescence, she acknowledges the strength and authority by which her grandmother, known to everyone as Nanny, ruled her life. Nanny raised Janie from a very young age after Janie's mother left, and Janie understood that she had to abide by her rules as well as those of the Washburns, on whose property they lived.

Janie’s elderly grandmother understood the temptations that sexual maturity would bring. She was also aware that her capabilities were diminishing and that she would reach a point when she could not provide for Janie. Without telling her granddaughter, Nanny arranges for her to marry a respectable—but much older—man named Logan Killicks. Nanny’s assumption that Janie would be unable to resist temptation was apparently confirmed when she saw the girl kissing the “trashy ... breath-and-britches” Johnny Taylor over the gate.

Nanny informs Janie that because she has her womanhood on her, she is ready to marry—an idea that Janie challenges. Nanny is concerned about Johnny, or another man like him, using Janie’s body to wipe his feet on, as she puts it.

It seems evident that Janie lacks mature judgment, but Nanny does not explain the situation and help Janie make sound decisions for herself. Instead, she had already pre-empted Janie’s decision and made arrangements behind her back for her to marry Logan. The teenager’s only alternative would have been to run away.

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