Essay on Hospital Sketches By Louisa May Alcott

Essay on Hospital Sketches By Louisa May Alcott

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Hospital Sketches by Louisa May Alcott is a semi-fictional depiction of the Civil War in America from her own point of view as a nurse. She creates a character for her self whose name is Tribulation Periwinkle she was a brand new nurse during the Civil War. This story is broken up into three “sketches” the first basically details how Periwinkle became a nurse and her daunting travels to her post in Washington D.C. In the second sketch she details how Periwinkle wanted so badly to be out in the field where the serious injuries were occurring however she was stationed at a temporary hospital in Washington the name of which was the Hurly-Burly House. One of the first tasks Periwinkle is given is to look after and take care of the men who have fallen ill. She was tasked with cleaning up the wounded men as they came in and dressing them in clean clothes before they were assigned a bed. Periwinkle also serves the men food and provides them with comfort along with assisting the surgeons with operations like amputations. Through the book you see her internal struggle with what she wanted to do as a nurse and what she was tasked with. As the book continues you see Periwinkle mature in her role as a nurse as she starts to take on more responsibility. Periwinkle is promoted to Night Shift Nurse where she is responsible for the patients. One patient Periwinkle cares for in particular really touched her as his condition continued to worsen and he eventually died. By the third sketch Periwinkle becomes ill and can no longer care for the ill and wounded. Her father travels all the way to Washington D.C. to gather her and take her back home to Massachusetts. The Civil War in America was so much more than just a war. This event brought along with...


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... one in hospitals. In conclusion Hospital Sketches by Louisa May Alcott depicted the short lived career of a civil war nurse and the experiences she had caring for patients it also showed how the American medical field has grown but also how it is similar in structure. There many influential and essential leaders during the civil war that helped make America what it is today; three of which are Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant and William A. Hammond. Lincoln was the commander and chief at the time of the civil war and who abolished slavery. Ulysses S. Grant was the General-in-chief of the United States Army who through the used of strong military war tactics forced General Lee and the Confederate Army to surrender. Lastly William A Hammond was appointed Surgeon General and as such he went around and inspected hospitals for cleanliness and compliance of regulations.

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