Phoenix versus Phoenix Eudora Wetly, story of Phoenix Jackson

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Phoenix versus Phoenix

Are They One in the Same?

"A Worn Path" "was first published in Atlantic Monthly in 1941, and soon afterward was included in a book entitled The Wide Net and Other Stories. In an interview with Atlantic Monthly the author, Eudora Wetly "said that she was inspired to write the story after seeing an old African-American woman walking alone across the Southern landscape" (Gale Research). "Unlike many of Eudora Welty's stories, "A Worn Path" has a deceptively un-complex organization. The major portion of this story simply recounts the journey of an old Negro woman into Natchez (A city of southwest Mississippi on the Mississippi River) at Christmas time to obtain medicine for her Grandson. Underneath this seemingly naïve account lies a persistent annoying suggestion that there is more to the story than appears at a casual reading" (Jones par. 2).

In literature, journeys are important; the characters that go on journey usually learn something about themselves, so that when they finish the journey, they are not the same person they were when they began.

As in, "A Worn Path", Welty's, main character Phoenix Jackson learns of her resilience and perseverance in completing what seems to be an impossible journey. The name Phoenix and the events of the story appear to parallel the "legendary Phoenix bird that lived in Arabia. According to tradition, the phoenix consumed itself by fire every 500 years, and a new, young phoenix sprang from its ashes. In the mythology of ancient Egypt, the phoenix represented the sun, which dies at night and is reborn in the morning. Early Christian tradition adopted the phoenix as a symbol of both immortality and resurrection." (Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2003)

"By the end of the second paragraph the reader of "...