Their Eyes Were Watching God Questions and Answers
by Zora Neale Hurston

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Who are the porchsitters in Their Eyes Were Watching God?

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The collective label of “porchsitters” is applied to people who sit and talk; it is largely a synonym for “gossips.” Many of the people frequently hang out on the porch of Joe Starks’s store, while others sit on their own porches. They tend to be highly critical of Janie Crawford.

The people had worked hard for the “bossman” during the day, functioning as “tongueless, earless, eyeless conveniences” whom the novel’s narrator compares to mules. Although their relentless gossiping has many negative...

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