Everything That Rises Must Converge Questions and Answers
by Flannery O’Connor

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In the story "Everything That Rises Must Converge," why do both Julian and his mother revert to childhood at the end?

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One might understand the words of the mother and son in ironic relation to the title of the story, which is also the tile of the collection of short stories in which it was published.  Following this direction of interpretation, the mother “rises” to childhood innocence as she descends into death; however, the son, though speaking in the language of a child’s love for his mother, does not rise, but rather remains in a quagmire below his mother, knowing he loved her but will not be able to demonstrate that to her. One critic puts it this way:  “What is left after [the mother’s]...

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