What are 5 topics I could write about in the White Heron?

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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"A White Heron" has many themes that could be interesting to address in an essay:

1.  Role of the environment in the story:  The author's careful descriptions of the woods, trees, and marshes could provide for some interesting analysis of how Jewett sets the tone through natural imagery.

2.  The theme of coming of age:  Jewett's young narrator, Sylvia, has a coming of age experience in this story as she grapple with the decision of revealing the beautiful white heron's nest to her hunter friend. 

3.  Friendship:  Analyze what Jewett's story has to say about friendship through Sylvia's choices in the novel. 

4.  Symbolism:  "A White Heron" is rich with symbolism and imagery.  Analyze how the author uses imagery and symbolism to reveal her tone toward the heron and the hunter.

5.  Temptation:  Sylvia is tempted by the hunter's offer of ten dollars.  What is the role of temptation in "A White Heron" and what do Sylvia's choice reveal about her values?


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