A Gathering of Days: A New England Girl's Journal, 1830-32 Questions and Answers
by Joan Winsor Blos

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In the book: A Gathering of Days, what does Catherine want to happen in history?

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I think Catherine may not have had anything specific in mind as to what she wants to see happen in history. She looks at history as something far bigger than she is which can not always be understood. As chronicled in her journal, after struggling with questions about death and injustice (the deaths of her mother and Cassie, the Nat Turner uprising, the Wiley Slide), she resolves, in obedience based on trust, to approach life with joy, accepting that "it takes both the salt and the sugar" (Ch. 18) to make a good one. Catherine sees history not as something she can direct, but as something she is priviledged to be able to watch unfold. I think she would only ask that each individual "do what you can to make it good" (Ch. 18) by being kind to one another, even in as small an act as giving a blanket to a stranger who is cold.

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