How does Margaret Edson's Wit account for Vivian Bearing's transformation in her character?

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teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Edson's Wit, Vivian Bearing transforms as a character after she ends up in the hospital dying of ovarian cancer.  Vivian is a professor and scholar who is an expert on the poetry of John Donne, and her professional life has taken over her character.  She is known as a hard professor, and she refuses to take the time to address any needs that her students might have.  In this way, she is cold and callous; she reasons that people need to use logic to figure out their problems.  However, once Vivian becomes ill and ends up in the hospital, she starts to learn that no amount of logic will help her survive.  She is angry that the doctors around her will not listen to her needs because they are so concerned with trying to figure out the logics of how her physical body works.  Through this experience, Vivian is transformed.

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