The Jilting of Granny Weatherall

by Katherine Anne Porter

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At the beginning of the story, what attitude does Granny have toward the doctor, toward Cornelia, and toward her own illness?  

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At the very beginning of the story, from the very first paragraph, Granny is extraordinarily disdainful of the doctor. She even goes as far as to refer to him a "brat" in her head. She is convinced that she is perfectly well and nothing is out of the ordinary, but this may belie a certain fear inside. The essence of her projected nature is in her very name. She believes that she can weather anything and insists that the doctor "leave a well woman alone."

Granny is somewhat annoyed with Cornelia but is much less outwardly vehement towards her daughter. Granny considers Cornelia to be dutiful to a fault and believes that she is no doubt leading the doctor on and making her sickness out to be more serious than it is. As the story goes on and it becomes evident to the reader that Granny is dying, she remains in this state of denial.

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In the beginning of the story, Granny perceives no reason for Doctor Harry to be visiting her, and blames this visit upon Cornelia, her daughter. For, she tells the doctor that the only reason she has taken to her bed is to "get rid of her."

Like many elderly people who have always been healthy, Granny Weatherall believes that there is nothing seriously wrong with her.

"Get along and doctor your sick....I'll call you when I need you....Don't let Cornelia lead you on," she shouted.

But, the reader soon detects that there is a certain irony to this exposition as Granny's eyes soon close as "a dark curtain drawn around her bed" seems to appear. Then her supposed conversation with Cornelia is incongruous as Cornelia's replies do not fit Granny's questions.

Throughout the narrative Granny fades in and out of consciousness, and the lines between the present and the past, reality and memory blur, reflecting probably what actually transpires as someone departs life. 


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