Is Eudora Welty successful in showing how human beings can be more interested in their own personal gains than the needs of others? Marian didn’t really want to visit the home for the elderly but she is a Campfire Girl and by taking out the time to go, she will gain points for offering her time to charity work. A gift of flowers was something that Marian brought to the home in order to make her visit look more genuine, but the apple that she brought; she hid outside so that none would think it was also a gift. There was no special person that she wanted to visit, she only wanted to do the job that she came for, earn her point and leave.
She wears her Campfire Girls cap to show who she is and she is very afraid to be around a bunch of older people that she has never met, before, but the added point means so much to her that she is willing to visit this strange home. She is more interested in what she can gain from this visit than what she can offer to others. Addie wasn’t thrilled by Marian’s visit. She was a cranky old lady who didn’t even like her roommate and couldn’t stand to hear her talk about a bunch of nothing, all the time. Marian had pretty, yellow hair which she wore a white cap over and she dressed in her red coat as she observed the two women in the nursing home.
She had a job to perform and so much to do in her life as she watched the two ladies who had nothing but each other. (Welty, 1980) In “A Visit of Charity”, Eudora Welty uses Marian as a character who acts in ways that many of us do at certain times in our lives, in performing deeds that are solely for ourselves, and sometimes we forget about the feelings of others. Welty demonstrates in this story that we need to not only try to work toward our own goals but at the same time, we need to consider the thoughts and emotions of others who are less fortunate.
Marian is the girl who Welty chose to show that people, especially young individuals, sometimes forget about more important things as we search for awards and points that make us look and feel better about ourselves. To truly feel better about ourselves, we must consider the feelings of others and then we gain the biggest reward of all; knowing that we made someone else’s day a little brighter and more fulfilling. Marian still had many lessons to learn, in life about human kindness, and as she takes a big bite out of the apple, she shows that she had been more interested in her own personal gain in this visit.
The author made you think about others in her writing. Eudora Welty clearly showed the selfishness that one can see in Marian’s visit to the nursing home and how she had so much to learn about the true meaning of sharing and giving of yourself in helping others who are less fortunate. I believe that Eudora Welty clearly showed that human beings are sometimes very capable of seeking out their own personal gain in life and are highly capable of not considering the feelings of others, as we do.
Welty, Marian. (1980) “A Visit of Charity”. Library of America.