Like many classic works of literature, "A Worn Path" features a journey and a quest. Discuss the elements of plot and structure that dramatize Phoenix's journey. What are the obstacles to her quest, and how dose she overcome them?
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Wikipedia defines a "quest" as "a journey towards a goal used in mythology and literature as a plot. In literature, the objects of quests require great exertion on the part of the hero, and the overcoming of many obstacles, typically including much travel..."
In literature, a quest can be as simple as going to the store for a loaf of bread. It doesn't have to be Perseus in pursuit of Medusa's dangerous head.
Phoenix Jackson begins her quest on a cold December morning. She already has lots of things against her: her failing eyesight, her age, her aching body. She does have knowledge of the path and experience on her side. She talks constantly to the animals--could be seen as comfort or a way for her to pass the time, could be interpreted as her spiritual side, or maybe she's just losing her mind. She trips and falls, she meets with a hunter who points his gun at her. All the while, she is convinced that her goal--the medicine for her grandson--is a quest for life not death. Her persistence and devotion, as well as her optimism keep both her and the plot of the story moving. Each time we, the reader, think she will turn back now or she will give up. However, Phoenix does not. She gets up when she falls, she keeps moving through snow and wind, and she does not cower in the face of a loaded rifle. She takes what is dealt and keeps moving forward with the determination and resolve of Job in the Bible.
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