Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

Janey Character Analysis

Jeanette’s second girlfriend. Janey’s family is much more tolerant of their relationship than the Wintersons, though Janey’s father doesn’t care much for Jeanette. When Jeanette tells Mrs Winterson that she is in love with the joyful, patient Janey, and that she is happy with her, Mrs Winterson kicks Jeanette out of the house, and then, as she leaves, asks her the question that will ultimately become the book’s title: “Why be happy when you could be normal?” Janey and Jeanette stay together through college, until Jeanette goes off to Oxford, and they do share a great deal of happiness, which is rare and healing for Jeanette.
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Janey Character Timeline in Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?

The timeline below shows where the character Janey appears in Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 8: The Apocalypse
Religion and Control Theme Icon
Mothers, Daughters, and Forgiveness Theme Icon
Jeanette went to her friend Janey’s house, and told Janey and her family what had happened—Janey’s mother agreed to let Jeanette... (full context)
Religion and Control Theme Icon
The Pursuit of Love and Happiness Theme Icon
Mothers, Daughters, and Forgiveness Theme Icon
That night, Janey and Jeanette slept together in the camper van, and confessed their love for one another.... (full context)
Chapter 9: English Literature A-Z
The Pursuit of Love and Happiness Theme Icon
...despite the fact that she does not have a license. She spends each Saturday with Janey and continues to work at the Accrington market. (full context)
Chapter 10: This Is The Road
Storytelling Theme Icon
The Pursuit of Love and Happiness Theme Icon
...encourages her to consider other options, Jeanette feels there are “no other options.” She and Janey travel to Oxford and camp at a camp-site outside town. Jeanette secures an appointment with... (full context)