Essay PreviewMore ↓
Devotion in A Worn Path
In "A Worn Path" by Eudora Welty an elderly African American woman named Phoenix Jackson picks a cold December day to make yet another perilous journey to a city to get medicine for her ailing grandson. On the way this ninety-year-old woman faces many obstacles, both natural and man-made. Phoenix draws upon her perseverance and willingness to sacrifice herself to help her throughout her journey, but it is the undying love for her grandson that truly guides and drives her to her final goal. Phoenix Jackson has a seemingly inexhaustible amount of determination. From the moment that she sets out on her trek, she must fight all the challenges that nature has made for her. From the very beginning there is the threat of attack by wild animals and Phoenix shouts "out of my way, all you foxes, owls, beetles, jack rabbits, coons and wild animals!" undauntingly challenging them.
Phoenix is a very old woman whose aged, fragile body isn't suited to make such a long journey. At one point when she is climbing up a hill, she states that it seems like "there is chains about my feet, time I get this far." And yet she still trudges onward, stopping only once for a short break. On the way down the hill she gets caught in a bush, its thorns tearing at her finest dress. "I in a thorny bush," she exclaims. But she doesn't give up; she stands there untangling herself from the bush, "her fingers busy and intent." After she has overcome this obstacle she faces yet another trial. Across Phoenix's path lies a creek and across the creek lies a log, which substitutes as a bridge. It is hard enough for Phoenix to walk on flat and stable ground, so walking across the log is a dangerous challenge for her. Even though there is a large threat of her falling and badly hurting herself, "she mounted the log and shut her eyes" and crosses to the other side. Next she comes across a barbwire fence, and once again without showing any signs of fear she fords ahea!
d crossing that too. Phoenix travels a good portion of the day facing many physical challenges that test her stamina, but the real trials are the physiological ones that she faces as she encounters people along her journey.
How to Cite this Page
"Devotion in Eudora Welty's A Worn Path." 123HelpMe.com. 18 Nov 2018
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- A Worn Path – An Analysis The short story "A Worn Path" by Eudora Welty, is a descriptive story of a grandmother's difficult journey, for a grandson she loves. Her devotion to her grandson and wanting to provide him with a better lifestyle, was her motivation to overcome these trials. On this trip, Phoenix Jackson, the grandmother, struggles against old age, nature, and reality. Phoenix Jackson was certainly a dedicated old lady. She refused to give up, despite the odds against her, to help her grandson.... [tags: Worn Path essays]
874 words (2.5 pages)
- Significance of the Mistletoe in Eudora Welty's 'A Worn Path After struggling up a hill, extricating herself from a thorn bush, and crossing a log over a creek, Phoenix Jackson, the aged and infirm protagonist of Eudora Welty's short story "A Worn Path," sits down on the banks of the creek for a rest: Up above her was a tree in a pearly cloud of mistletoe. She did not dare close her eyes, and when a little boy brought her a plate with a slice of marble-cake on it she spoke to him. "That would be acceptable," she said.... [tags: Worn Path Essays]
904 words (2.6 pages)
- Abstract This essay will contrast a good and evil concept between two different stories. There is an obvious distinction that stands out between the stories; however they are similar in one way. In A Worn Path (Eudora Welty) and A Good Man is Hard to Find (Flannery O’Conner) the one thing that sticks out, is the main character in both stories. The main character in both stories being the grandmother. Grandmothers are of course an important part of the family. In each story we have a grandmother of a different race, appearance, and attitude.... [tags: A Good Man is Hard to Find, a worn path]
1137 words (3.2 pages)
- Strength of Love in A Worn Path In the story A Worn Path, Eudora Welty shows an old woman living in a time period where racial prejudice is rampant and out of control. Phoenix Jackson is a grandmother whose only motivation for living is to nurture her grandson back to health. The strength of love may make people do or say unusual and implausible things. The central idea of this story is that love can empower someone to over come many life-threatening obstacles. The idea is shown when an old woman conquers all odds against her to show her everlasting love for her grandson.... [tags: A Worn Path essays]
1002 words (2.9 pages)
- “A Worn Path” “A Worn Path” is a story of determination and true strength of a grandmother through her journey to her grandson’s salvation. The title itself explores a cyclical path that each of us encounters in our lives and will continue to do so in the future. “The Worn Path” begins and ends throughout the course of Phoenix Jackson’s journey. In the story "A Worn Path" by Eudora Welty, an old woman whose human spirit is full of devotion, dignity and high drive overcomes tremendous impediments of life in the name of love for her grandson.... [tags: essays papers]
478 words (1.4 pages)
- Comparing and Contrasting the Symbolism in Literary Journey’s Introduction In analyzing and comparing symbolism, form, and style of the literary work “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost and the short story of “A Worn Path” by Eudora, Welty I ask so what is the symbolic discovery that gives the reader new ideas, connecting experiences, considering deeper insights, and coming to conclusions with harmonious delight. Although we all have ‘roads’ or ‘paths’ to take on our journey in life it is in how we handle the experience; and what we gain from those life journeys that will either enrich our life or be our demise.... [tags: Finding Symbolism, Content, Metaphors]
2316 words (6.6 pages)
- ... Putting her right foot out, she mounted the log and shut her eyes. Leveling her cane fiercely before her, she began to march across."(Welty, 342) and "She had to go through a barbed-wire fence. There she had to creep and crawl, spreading her knees and stretching her fingers like a baby trying to climb steps." (Welty, 342). Both of these quotations show the pure determination and sacrificial love she possesses. Phoenix, using her walking cane to feel along a narrow log as she blindly crosses a river below, and also she manoeuvres over a barbed-wire fence with no regard to her physical condition.... [tags: Eudora Welty, A Worn Path, Fiction, Short story]
1465 words (4.2 pages)
- ... A phoenix is mythological bird that turns to ashes upon dying and is born again from the ashes. It represents our capacity for vision, for collecting sensory information about our environment and the events unfolding within it. Phoenix Jackson uses her sensory information to get across the log in the pinewoods. The author notes, “Putting her right foot out, she mounted the log and shut her eyes. Lifting her skirt, leveling her cane fiercely before her, like a festival figure in some parade, she began to march across.... [tags: Eudora Welty, A Worn Path, Symbol, White people]
899 words (2.6 pages)
- Eudora Welty's "A Worn Path" Throughout time, people have traveled the trodden course of life, overcoming obstacles along the way and grasping onto hope to strengthen their steps. In her short story “A Worn Path”, Eudora Welty communicates this timeless theme through the protagonist, Phoenix, who has traveled this path many times. Through her usage of dialogue and symbolism, Welty illustrates the lasting concept that people conquer hardships in life and ultimately prevail. Welty utilizes dialogue to portray how others belittle Phoenix and attempt to destroy her dignity in vain.... [tags: Eudora Welty Worn Path Essays]
649 words (1.9 pages)
- Eudora Welty's A Worn Path Eudora Welty's 'A Worn Path' is a story that emphasizes the natural symbolism of the surroundings. As the story begins, we are introduced to our main character, Phoenix Jackson; she is described as a small, old Negro woman. I believe that the name Eudora Welty gives our main character is very symbolic. The legend of the Phoenix is about a fabled sacred bird of ancient Egyptians. The bird is said to come out of Arabia every 500 years to Heliopolis, where it burned itself on the altar and rose again from its ashes, young and beautiful.... [tags: Eudora Welty Worn Path Essays Papers]
1353 words (3.9 pages)
The first person that she meets is a hunter. In the beginning he seems like a benevolent character because "he lifted her up, gave her a swing in the air, and set her down," helping her out of the ditch that a dog had pushed her into. He even inquires "anything broken, Granny?" and goes on to ask her where she lives. But then his manner turns unfriendly. "Why, that's too far ... now you go on home, Granny!" he exclaims when he learns where Old Phoenix is headed. He even starts to belittle her, trying to insinuate that his race is superior to hers. "I know you old colored people! Wouldn't miss going to town to see Santa Claus!" he says implying that Phoenix would make such a long and arduous trip to satisfy a mere childish whim. The hunter even turns hostile p!
ointing a gun at Phoenix just to see her reaction. "Doesn't the gun scare you?" he asks. "No, sir, I seen plenty go off closer, in my day," she replies calmly and respectfully. The hunter sees the courage that emanates from her and decides to leave her alone. Another quality that Phoenix possesses that helps her make her journey is a deep sense of self-sacrifice. This sense of self-sacrifice gives her the ability to risk getting hurt or even killed in order to get what her grandson needs.
This sense of self sacrifice is present throughout the story for the journey itself is a constant battle where Phoenix gives up her comfort and security to go into a strange and hostile environment for the medicine. Such a hostile environment is the city. As Phoenix says herself, she is "an old woman without an education," who has probably lived in the country all of her life. The city is a foreign and intimidating place to her, but she ventures in for the sake of her grandson. Phoenix Jackso!
n draws upon her immense love for her ailing grandson to produce perseverance, resourcefulness and willingness to live that otherwise would never be there. The greatest example of this comes at the end of the story, when Phoenix has reached the doctor's office.
At this point Phoenix has been challenged physically, emotionally and physiologically and she is worn out. She is on the brink of collapse when she reaches the doctor's office and the only thought that fills her mind is that she has made it. So, when the attendant in the doctor's office asks her why she has come, Phoenix completely blanks out. She has been pushing herself so hard for so long that she no longer remembers why she must get to the city, but only that she must somehow make her way to the doctor's office. Even when a nurse, who knows Phoenix, comes in and reminds her of her grandson, Phoenix doesn't remember. Only when the nurse cold-heartedly says, "he isn't dead is he?" does Phoenix remember. The story ends with Phoenix going out to a store to buy her grandson a toy with the money that she has acquired during the journey. She doesn't even think for a second to go and buy herself something to eat something to sustain her on the long and cold walk home. Her love and devotion support her and give her an endless source of almost supernatural strength. The strength that she radiates toward her grandson, the strength that nourishes his life