An Evaluation of “A Worn Path”
The worn path written by Eudora Welty (1941) is a great short story about Phoenix Jackson, an old African American woman who beats all odds to make a trip into town for medicine for her grandson, she overcomes many challenges that test her courage and will. Because of her loyalty and love, Phoenix has sacrificed her own well-being on this dangerous path for the well-being of her grandson.
The worn path theme is the love and dedication she has for her grandson. The term “worn path” symbolizes how much she cares for her grandson; the author uses several different literary techniques in the third person point of view to keep us interested. Using the third person point of view allows us to relate and empathize with phoenix, because her thoughts and actions are well illustrated. Phoenix faces the challenges of the cold weather, walking through rough woods, harassed by a white hunter, and patronizing people at the doctor's office so that she can get medicine for her ill grandson. In Welty's "The Worn Path," Phoenix Jackson's thoughts and perceptions, as well as her encounters with other characters, illustrate the theme of impending black equality and amalgamation in the South after the Civil War. (Sykes, 1998) The term “worn path” symbolizes the many trips Phoenix has made to the medial clinic. This confirms that Phoenix will make this "journey of love" as long as she has the ability to walk. Phoenix’s name is an allusion to the mythical bird that in its life time burns up in flames and then rises again from its own ashes to become a strong and fierce bird once again. This is certainly witnesses through the story when Phoenix overcomes various obstacles, such as the threat of the white man, and seems renewed in her perseverance in getting to town for the medicine for her grandson. The author filled the story with Irony. Phoenix appears to be very determined and not easily put down, seemingly strong while...
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