Find images in "The Worn Path" and relate them to your own personal experience.Find images in "The Worn Path" and relate them to your own personal experience.

Expert Answers
cybil eNotes educator| Certified Educator
Find images in "The Worn Path" and relate them to your own personal experience.

Find images in "The Worn Path" and relate them to your own personal experience.

Unfortunately I've witnessed the kind of racism that Phoenix is subject to in the story. Her concerns about being shot by the hunter for "stealing" his nickel, the disrespectful way he treats her, the impatience shown by the receptionist in the doctor's office all demonstrate a common thread that was a part of life where I grew up. It's gratifying, however, to see that when Phoenix asks the white woman to lace up her shoe, this character, whose compassion and generosity are revealed by the packages and gifts she carries, graciously aids this old woman. The South was changing and thankfully has changed significantly in my lifetime.

linda-allen eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This question belong on the discussion board.

The image that I can most relate to my personal experience is the woman's appearance. When I read the story, I can picture my own grandmother in place of the woman. My Granny Allen was like Phoenix--proud, determined, but also deferential  to people she thought were "higher" than her. It always bothers me when an elderly person calls a younger person "ma'am" or "sir," the way Phoenix addresses the hunter and the nurses. It should always be the other way around, if only by virture of age. My Grandma Morton, on the other hand, would have accepted the hunter's help up out of the ditch and then slapped him out of her way so she could continue on to town.

accessteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Personally the image that I find most moving and saddening at the same time is the way that, after having triumphed over so many barriers and problems to get to the doctor's office, she then finds that she has to face yet another barrier: the racism and attitudes of others that seem to conspire against her. Having worked with refugees in my own country and having shared their frustrations by the way that they were treated by my own countrymen, I cannot read this without feeling immensely guilty about the attitudes so many of us hold against people who are different in some way to us.

kwoo1213 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The image of the path itself, with briars and obstacles, is memorable.  Personally, it makes me think of all of the adversity I've had in my life.  I've been through deaths, divorce, heartaches, etc., and made it through, mainly because of my children.  Just as Phoenix is dedicated to her grandson, I'm dedicated to my children.  Parents will go through fire to aid their children!

amy-lepore eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The image of the woman going through all sorts of trials for that sick baby in his bed at home.  I keep thinking of that boy and how much she is willing to suffer to get him that medicine...the whole time she is not even certain he will be alive when she returns.  That is true love and sacrifice, and that is the image that is imbedded in my mind.

Lori Steinbach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I, too, love the image of a white woman coming to the aid of this elderly, rather eccentric black woman. My grandmother is 92 and a little eccentric; I watch others naturally gravitate to her to offer assistance in all kinds of ways. I wonder if everyone would have helped Phoenix tie her shoe. I fear not.

kwoo1213 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Another image is of Phoenix being at the doctor's office getting the medication for her grandson.  This reminds me of my own grandmother who did so much for me and my brother and sisters and her other grandchildren.  The sacrifices that she made for all of us we can never repay her. 

mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It is poignant indeed how Phoenix realizes that she is losing her eyesight and that at times her mind does not work so well.  Her determination to pursue the "worn path" as long as she can to help her pitiful grandson displays courage in the face of fate.

Read the study guide:
A Worn Path

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question