A White Heron is a composition of a short story by Sarah Orne Jewett which was initially published in 1886 by Houghton, Mifflin and Company. The story concentrates of a little girl by the name Sylvia who used to live with her grandmother in the upcountry. The girl came in to contact with an Ornithologist hunter who was in his search for a rare species of a bird which he had information was spotted in the area. Sylvia becomes instrumental in the search for the bird and meets herself in a tough dilemma as will be discussed later. The upcountry environment presents Sylvia with an opportunity to discover her passion for the country and all the creatures inhibiting it (Sara 12).
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Good Country People is a short story written by Flannery O'Connor where she uses characterization, irony and symbolism in her quest to warn and sensitize people with the use and association with nihilistic philosophy which eventually results to their ruins.
The author identifies different personalities of people holding diverse personalities, ideas, and opinions that are destructive without considering their final implications in their lives in social, economic and political frontiers. The story majorly concentrates with the case of an atheist young woman who is completely destroyed when she is confronted by evil personification of her world view (Gordon 5).
Analysis of the stories
The story A White Heron describes a little young girl who adapts the country life by living her grandmother. She is tasked with the hard physical responsibilities that the grandmother cannot perform like grazing the livestock. Due to various adventures in the forests and the country in general, she develops passion for the nature and its phenomenon. This is well described by her explanations of the cows when she says that their feet were familiar with the path and it was no matter whether their eyes could see it or not.
One evening, Sylvia is met with a hunter in search of a rare species of a bird which the hunter believes it has its nest within the vicinity. When the hunter spends his night in the grandmothers' house, he offers a certain sum of money to anyone who would direct him to the nest of the white heron (Wolfgang 45).
The next morning, the hunter sets off his journey to the forest in search of the bird accompanied by Sylvia but all his efforts proves futile at the end of the day. Sylvia decides to alone the following day in the search to be sure of whereabouts the nest. Her efforts and determination bears fruits when she locates the white heron by herself contrary to the man's efforts which bared no fruits. Sylvia's loss comes in when she fails to disclose the exact location of the heron to the hunter, therefore losing on the large sum of money awarded by the hunter. He conscience could not allow her participate in the death of the bird. Sylvia is full of regrets in her old age for foregoing such a handsome reward but the narrator of the story (Jewett) urges the nature to bless her for her selflessness doings and natural preservations (John and Melinda 21).
Good Country people is introduced by another lady whose name is Joy Hopewell who lost her leg through an accident. Due to her conditions, she changes her name to Hulga which she considered as an ugly name since she regarded her state as ugly. Her loss brought hopelessness and lack of joy in her life therefore preferring moving around noisily with her wooden leg which she also considered and regarded as ugly as well, she goes ahead to dress in ugly clothing, talks corruptibly, and behaves irresponsibly since she considered herself as already lost the most important thing; dignity and respect. Despite this condition and situation, Hulga attains a PhD in Philosophy which confirms her capabilities despite the loss which many men have not achieved on contrary.
Hulga struggles throughout the story to maintain total control of her life as well as the believe system. Their loss is either directly or indirectly related to the relations they hold with men especially focusing at the case of Sylvia who fears to participate in the death of the birth. Her association with the hunter contributes to her loss (Sara 25).
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