Essay - A White Heron White Heron - Sarah Orne Jewett This...

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A White Heron

White Heron - Sarah Orne Jewett

This is a story with sever*****l important themes, and one of them is pastoral innocence coming into contact ***** into conflict ***** the loss ***** ***** in a modern, industrial world. The tone, conflict and character development in this story follows along the lines of what is known as American literary realism; indeed, realism is evident in a story when character is more critical to the ***** than plot or the actual action. Realism is a strategy ***** which ethical choices are at h*****, the s*****ry line ***** plausible, and humans are placed in n*****ural ***** settings.

In A White Heron, those elements are very much present. This is a story in which ***** ***** of this innocent girl is more ***** to the reader than the precise steps that are taken in ***** plot. This is a ***** intriguing and original tale about the innocence of a girl who seems ***** like the creatures ***** the natural world than she ***** like young people her own age. The s*****ry embraces the changes ***** challenges facing a young girl ***** ***** ***** confronted with a potenti*****l loss of innocence.

Indeed, nine-year old Sylvia is the central character, the protagonist; she is a working class girl but readers don't know exactly what city she lives near but it ***** in New England, ***** a m*****nufacturing center. This city near where she is living is an industrially focused metropol*****, and the shy ***** has somehow grown "afraid of folks" (598, Norton *****nthology of American Literature), which when one thinks about it is not that unusual for a girl who "...feels ********** if she were a part ***** ***** gray shadows and moving leaves..."

Sylvia has been adopted by her gr*****mot*****, a widow, and lives in a t*****y house in the middle of a wooded area. What readers know about Sylvia right away is that she loves ***** natural world sett*****g ***** ***** not involved in any apparent stress or pressure. That wooded w*****ld ***** ***** daily has to hunt down her dairy cow is someth*****g of a metaphor for a pastoral place beyond the boundary of the real and ugly world.

Jewett writes (page 597, Norton) that Sylvia "...***** all the time t*****e was, ***** very little use to make of it." And so with all ***** time on her hands, it's reas*****able ***** expect an alert yet shy young girl with no playmates to become fascinated with birds and animals in the *****est. Sylvia's grandmother mentioned that Sylvia had a kn*****ck of "...straying ***** out-*****-doors" and grandma also believed that the "...***** ***** counts her one o' themselves" (599).

This child could be considered a metaphor for ***** in the genre of realism. She ***** well be thought of as a symbol of ***** the world w***** ***** before industrialization, before wars, greed, lust for power and control of nature, and before the invention of weapons ***** kill. Her heart "beat fast


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