Response Paper 1
March 12, 2013
“Country over City”
A fable is a fictional story that features animals, mythical creatures, plants, or forces of nature which are given human qualities such as verbal communication or feelings and that lead to an interpretation of a moral lesson. “The White Heron” is a fable of a girl and a bird hunter that adventure out for the rare bird. The girl decides to find the Heron without the hunter and becomes secretive of its whereabouts. Two reasons why “The White Heron” is a fable from my point of view are the human feelings and characteristics of the cow and the tree along with the moral agenda of the author. The first reason this is a fable are the human feelings and characteristics of the cow and the tree. For example, the cow is named Mistress Moolly and is shown as being quite intelligent. Mistress Moolly learns to keep still so her bell won’t make noise when hiding from Sylvia. Also the cow is considered the little girl’s companion as in a human connection. Another example is the feelings the narrator gives the tree as Sylvia climbs to the top of it. The narrator talks as if the tree can feel; “it must truly have been amazed that morning through all its ponderous frame as it felt this determined spark of human spirit creeping and climbing from higher branch to higher branch. The old pine must have loved his new dependent”. (Jewett 531) The tree and cow are given human feelings a given tell of a key component in a fable. The second reason this is a fable is the moral agenda that is up for interpretation at the end of the story. This story can have different moral interpretations mine being one of naturalism over materialism. Every fable has to have a moral lesson. The story takes a turn towards the end and Sylvia no longer wants money to help the hunter achieve his goal of killing the bird for when she discovers the Heron’s nest she keeps it a secret. She feels important in nature and...
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