Essay on America's Identy Crisis in Welty's A Worn Path

Essay on America's Identy Crisis in Welty's A Worn Path

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Welty’s A Worn Path demonstrates an identity crisis of American culture towards racism and poverty. Reading at the beginning and not understanding or looking beyond it, it’s just an old lady going to town to get her ill grandson some medication. Nothing exciting to read, it’s kind of boring, no climax at all. This is true if we didn’t consider the hidden symbolisms and other issues involved in the story. This story is so simple but tells more than just am old African Americans trip to town for medicine for her grandson. But from a great insight, Phoenix Jackson developed a sense of responsibility toward her grandson, who actually might be the only person in her life in life itself.
The moral of the story tells about an old African American woman named phoenix Jackson who was taking a journey from her home into town to seek some medication for her ill grandson. During this journey the story describes Phoenix Jackson facing struggles and obstacles against her eye sight and old age, as well as nature’s obstacles, thorn bushes and barbed wire. Thru these obstacles Phoenix Jackson is able to depict her poetic view of the world through symbolism. During the time period this story was written was in 1941 WWII had just begun, but not only that also of poverty that was a reality to many—particularly to blacks and people rural areas.
The title itself, “A Worn Path,” referred to life as the journey itself through a worn path. Obstacles that Phoenix Jackson faced shows the real-life hardships, lies, and aggressions, that minorities face. Despite its simplicity, Eudora Welty’s “A Worn Path” does show us some of the greatest of life’s reality.

The writer starts the story using racial description and symbolism to describe Phoenix Jackson. The...


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...urtful act that should have caused guilt. Another instance was guilt, it was shown when the clinic attendant gave Phoenix another nickel; although it was kind this seems to be her way of compensating an earlier offensive statement “Are you deaf?” to Phoenix. What she chose to do was not coming from being kind buy because it was a sense of duty. The same can be said with the woman who tied Phoenix’s shoelaces—that she did it out of duty of Christmas season rather than genuine concern for the elderly.
Phoenix Jackson must endure racial prejudice as part of her everyday life. It is interesting though, that the people she encounters don’t treat her with any respect and kindness. From nowadays to back then signifies perhaps that America is making progress in racism and discrimination. But not until the civil-rights movement did blacks gain all their rights under the law.

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