Analysis Of Jack London And Eudora Welty 's ' A Fire And A Worn Path '
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Two Troublesome Journeys
In the stories To Build a Fire and A Worn Path, Jack London and Eudora Welty tell the stories of two protagonists going on arduous journeys during the winter. Phoenix Jackson, the protagonist of A Worn Path, is an elderly lady hardened by the trials of life as a black woman living in the Southern United States, prior to the Civil Rights Era. She is surprisingly limber, resilient, and healthy for her age and has assumed the responsibility of caring for her sick seven- year- old grandson. She diligently provides him with the medicine necessary to treat him for the ingestion of lye. The young man, the protagonist in To Build a Fire, is a young northerner who is responsible for himself and his dog. He is besieged by the petulance of youth and ignores the advice of his elders, depending instead on youthful bravado to guide his decisions. Ultimately, on these two journeys of survival, both protagonists will depend on their life experiences to guide them through. The young man will be guided by his limited life experiences while Phoenix will depend on her wealth of knowledge to choose her path to survival.
Phoenix Jackson and The Young Man embarked on their journeys for different reasons. Phoenix’s journey was a necessary journey; her grandson needed the medicine in order to be healthy. She took the journey because of her sense of responsibility and love for her grandson. Like any grandmother,