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

In A White Heron, those elements are very much present. This is a story in ***** the ***** ***** ***** innocent girl is ***** important 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 more like the creatures ***** the natural world than she ***** ***** young people her own age. The ***** embraces the changes ***** challenges facing a young ***** *****s ***** ***** confronted with a potenti*****l loss of innocence.

Indeed, nine-year old Sylvia is the central character, ***** protagonist; she is a working class girl but *****s don't know exactly what city she lives near but it ***** in New England, near a manufactur*****g center. This c*****y near where she is living ***** an industrially focused metropolis, and the shy ***** has somehow gr***** "afraid of folks" (598, Nor*****n Anthology of American Literature), which when one thinks about it is not that unusual for a girl who "...feels as if she were a p*****rt ***** the gray shadows and moving leaves..."

Sylvia h***** been adopted by *****er gr*****mother, a widow, *****nd lives in a tiny house in the middle of a wooded **********. What readers know about Sylvia right away is that ***** loves this natural world sett*****g and is not involved in any apparent stress or pressure. That wooded ***** ***** she daily has to hunt down her dairy cow is someth*****g of a met*****ph***** for a pastoral place beyond the boundary of the real and ugly world.

Jewett wr*****es (page 597, Norton) that Sylvia "...***** all ***** time there was, and very little use to make of it." And so with all that time on her h*****s, it's reasonable ***** 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-of-doors" and gr*****ma also believed that the "...wild creatures counts her one o' themselves" (599).

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


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