A Worn Path Theme Essay

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Eudora Welty’s A Worn Path: Conveying the Theme of Sacrificial Love How much does a grandmother love her grandson? It is difficult to show more love than Phoenix Jackson did in Eudora Welty’s short story A Worn Path. Jackson is an old and poor grandmother whose senses are beginning to fail her, but she goes through seemingly unbearable trials in order to get to town and pick up her grandson’s medicine that will keep him alive. In this heartwarming story, Welty uses symbolism and various conflicts to create the theme of sacrificial love. In A Worn Path, Welty uses symbolism to illustrate her theme by giving the protagonist the name Phoenix. A phoenix is often used as a symbol of death and resurrection from the ashes ("Ancient Symbolism of…show more content…
Because she is an elderly African-American in Mississippi of the early 1900s, it is extremely likely that Jackson lived through the days of slavery and it is indisputable that she is living during the Jim Crow era of segregation. These circumstances mean that Jackson is looked down upon because of her race, despite how determined and courageous she really is. People disrespect Phoenix by referring to her as “granny” multiple times. A hunter also tells her that old colored people “wouldn’t miss going to town to see Santa Claus” (59). Later on, the young white hunter points a gun to her face and asks if it scares her, but she says that she saw plenty of guns go off in front of her. Jackson is willing to go through these conflicts in order to get to Natchez and achieve her goal. In conclusion, Eudora Welty did a good job showing the sacrificial love of a grandmother in A Worn Path. She gave her protagonist a name that symbolizes death and rebirth, and she also created difficult conflicts that accurately shows the endless parameters of Phoenix Jackson’s sacrificial love. It is our job to show this kind of sacrificial love toward others. We should strive for the love Phoenix Jackson has and sacrifice like she did for our loved
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