In the pages of the short stories, A Worn Path and A Rose For Emily we are able to see a similar side and connection between the two. As we look at the theme, tone, and morals we are able to better grasp the conflict in these two stories, while detecting whether the two protagonists, Miss Emily and Phoenix Jackson are mentally crazy.
The main moral in A Worn Path is the love, and life of Phoenix Jackson. The path she travels across interrupts her life. Her love is the love and affection she has for her grandson. If we read the story closer then it may lead us to the conclusion that Phoenix really does not have a Grandson. Phoenix complains to the doctor that her Grandson has had a sore throat for an extremely long time. This may cause the reader to believe that she used to have a Grandson but he became so sick he died. Yet, at the same time Phoenix also shows her intellect by seeing the money fall out of the hunter’s jacket from a far off distance.
In A Rose For Emily the main moral is that some people will do anything not to be alone when they feel scared, and afraid of being left again. Miss Emily’s father used to chase away all of her boyfriends or men she had feelings for. She became adapted to this life of only having her father and when he dies then she feels alone and doesn’t want to ever be alone again and she has not the knowledge to maintain her own boyfriend or husband. So she decides to kill her current crush and she keeps him in a locked room until the day she dies.
When you compare the two books they have a very similar tone. Though the locations different they still connect through the same tone. Phoenix Jackson is on a trail walking to town to buy some medicine for her Grandson, while Miss Emily is locked up in her house with a dead man. If you were to not focus as much on the location and put your attention to their state of mind then you can see that they are in the same atmosphere. The tone in A Worn Path is for Phoenix to accomplish the task of getting medicine for her grandchild, while the reader can look at the path as the challenges of her life. Miss Emily on the other hand is just looking to not be so alone.
They both know that if they set their mind to their goal then they can accomplish anything they wish to. The theme is slightly different however. Miss Emily and Phoenix both have goals, but in A Worn Path Phoenix’s life is portrayed so much by the path itself. The path in the story tells the life of Phoenix. While Miss Emily is just a woman who sits at home and does not go out in public too often, she just wants to have company. Phoenix on the other hand had her mindset to go to town and socialize while purchasing the medicine.
The conflict in A Rose For Emily is the conflict of human vs. human. However the story is told in a third person point of view, which does not gives us any insight to exactly what Emily, was thinking. The same goes for Phoenix, maybe if the story was told in a first person point of view we would know if they are crazy or sane, because we could get into their mind and tell what it is they were thinking. For example, we don’t know what Phoenix was thinking as she walked down the path, fell in the hole, and reached town.
For Emily we could tell clearly if she was insane when she killed the man in her house by her thoughts and emotions. The conflict in A Worn Path is the battle between not only human vs. human but also human vs. nature. The battle of human vs. human lives in the mind of Phoenix but we have little insight of that because how the story is told in a third person not her mind. The next is human vs. nature because of the trials Phoenix has on the trail with the bumps, rocks, ditches, hunters, dogs, and etcetera.
Therefore in the stories of A Worn Path and A Rose For Emily we see the similarities that linger in the mind of humans and they way they act to the observing eye. There are several things that are the same such as the tone, conflict, and they have relative morals. Yet they have a different theme to make the reader compare and contrast these two books and their differences.
Courtney from Study Moose
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