Questions and Answers for A White Heron

A White Heron

What does the white heron symbolize in ‘‘A White Heron’’?

The heron symbolizes nature and the damage that society was doing to nature in the late 19th century. At that time, people began to develop an interest in beautiful birds especially, and women...

Latest answer posted September 21, 2016 10:20 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," is there symbolism  in Sylvia's climbing the tree near the end of the story?

The short story "A White Heron" tells of a girl named Sylvia who lives with her grandmother in the woods of Maine. While bringing the cow home, she comes across a tall young man who is hunting for...

Latest answer posted July 18, 2019 2:32 am UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

What is the main conflict that Sylvia feels about the stranger in "A White Heron"?  

Sylvia comes to enjoy the company of the pleasant hunter/ornithologist she meets on the path home, but she also loves the nature he seems determined to possess. When he offers her ten dollars to...

Latest answer posted December 23, 2019 3:05 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

Where is the setting of "A White Heron"?  How does the author tell you about the setting?

The story is set near the coast of Maine. It is set on a farm. Sylvia has moved there from the city to live with her grandmother. She has no human friends, but has a deep connection with nature...

Latest answer posted August 9, 2008 1:30 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is the theme of "A White Heron"? 

Stories tend to contain multiple themes, often interwoven with one another, and "A White Heron" is no different on this account. An earlier Educator has already written at length on how this story...

Latest answer posted August 26, 2019 6:37 pm UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

The point of view changes throughout the story. From what point of view is the story told the most?

The point of view in "A White Heron" is third person omniscient. Early in the text, the narrator focuses the most attention on the landscape and the animals within it. This is done in a way that...

Latest answer posted September 29, 2019 3:44 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

What do the hunter and the white heron symbolize in “A White Heron?" 

There is definitely a dichotomy or a binary opposition set up here between culture and nature. This opposition is also suggestive of the town and country duality. The White Heron represents nature....

Latest answer posted December 17, 2015 7:29 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What conflict does Sylvia face in "The White Heron" by Sarah Orne Jewett?

Sylvia faces an internal conflict of the character vs. self variety. When the hunter offers her ten dollars in order to reveal to him the location of the heron's nest, she cannot help but be...

Latest answer posted June 23, 2018 12:09 am UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

Why didn't Sylvia tell the stranger where the white heron's nest was?  

Sylvia doesn't tell the stranger where to find the heron's nest because she knows he'll kill the herons, and she doesn't want that to happen. Sylvia is shown to have a great love for nature from...

Latest answer posted June 8, 2019 3:38 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

Describe Sylvia's life before and after moving to her grandmother's farm in "A White Heron."

Sylvia has come to live at her grandmother's farm after having lived eight years in a crowded, dirty, noisy city with her parents. She is afraid of people which indicates that she did not have...

Latest answer posted July 29, 2008 8:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is the rising action, climax, and the falling action of the short story, "A White Heron"?

The rising action of the story begins when the hunter, a representative of the story's antagonist -- society -- happens upon Sylvia in the woods. Tension begins to build at this point because she...

Latest answer posted August 28, 2016 4:56 pm UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

What is Sylvia's reaction when she first sees the hunter in "A White Heron"?  

Sylvia hears the hunter before she sees him. He whistles, loudly and clearly, and she is "horror-stricken" because she immediately figures out that it isn't a bird's whistle she hears but a boy's....

Latest answer posted March 26, 2016 12:21 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," why does Sylvia climb the great pine tree?

Sylvia is a young girl who has left a crowded industrial town to live with her grandmother on a beautiful, remote farm near the sea. Sylvia is fearful of people, but living on the farm allows her...

Latest answer posted January 22, 2009 3:36 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

In "A White Heron" how would you describe Sylvia? What characteristics about her stand out?

Sylvia changes from a shy little girl into a young adult during the course of the story. At the beginning of the story, her greatest pleasure is "to hide herself away among the huckleberry bushes."...

Latest answer posted January 28, 2009 12:19 am UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

Looking at "A White Heron" from a feminist point of veiw, what would you say the white heron could represent?

In "The White Heron," Sarah Orne Jewett draws numerous parallels between Sylvia, the little girl, and the elusive bird. In the morning scene in which Sylvia climbs the tall pine, both the girl and...

Latest answer posted July 3, 2018 3:44 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

How is Sarah Orne Jewett's "The White Heron" an example of local color realism?

Jewett's story is a great example of "local color," a term that refers to literary fiction primarily about a specific place or region. The story exemplifies this is several ways. Setting: The story...

Latest answer posted November 23, 2019 2:00 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

What is Sylvia's relationship like with nature in "A White Heron"?

Sylvia’s changing relationship with nature is one primary theme of “A White Heron.” As a former city girl, she comes to know the natural world in increasingly intimate, nuanced ways. Confronting...

Latest answer posted October 29, 2018 7:42 pm UTC

4 educator answers

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," by Sarah Orne Jewett, Sylvia does not tell the man where to find the white heron. The basis of...

The protagonist in Sarah Orne Jewett's short story "A White Heron" is a young girl named Sylvia. She lives with her grandmother now because living in the city nearly killed her spirit. Everybody...

Latest answer posted July 23, 2013 2:47 am UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

How is "A White Heron" by Sarah Orne Jewett a work of literary realism?

"A White Heron" is realistic in its depiction of the poverty that Sylvia and her grandmother, Mrs. Tilley, live in, so that it is believable the ten dollars (several hundred dollars in today's...

Latest answer posted February 23, 2020 7:35 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

What is the tone of "A White Heron"?

We can find the answer to this question by considering the overall message and theme of this story, which involves the young, lonely girl having to choose between betraying nature in the form of...

Latest answer posted August 21, 2011 10:13 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

In The White Heron, why does Sylvia not speak or cannot speak?

In the last line of the second to last paragraph in the story, the author writes, "Sylvia cannot speak; she cannot tell the heron's secret and give its life away." Sylvia's only friend, the...

Latest answer posted June 17, 2010 6:53 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," Sylvia does not tell the hunter where the white heron is. Why is her decision difficult?

Sylvia is torn between protecting the white heron and gaining materially by betraying it. Revealing its whereabouts would also please the young man who wants to shoot and stuff it. First, as the...

Latest answer posted September 18, 2019 12:33 am UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

In "A White Heron" what do  Sylvia and the heron have in common?

Both Sylvia and the heron have quite a few things in common. Both are solitary, lone creatures that are most comfortable surrounded by nature and its beauty. The heron is a rare bird, just as...

Latest answer posted October 10, 2009 10:59 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

Who is Mistress Moolly in "A White Heron"?

Mistress Moolly is the old cow that belongs to Sylvia's grandmother. The cow is "a plodding, dilatory, provoking creature", but "a valued companion" for little Sylvia, who is "afraid of folks",...

Latest answer posted January 26, 2009 8:31 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is the relationship between humans and nature in "A White Heron?"

Two relationships between human and nature are shown in "A White Heron." Sylvia has a very close connection to the nature and, in the end, sees her job as protecting it. The is why she does not...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2008 12:36 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What does the heron symbolize in "A White Heron"?

The white heron can symbolize a few things. First, the heron symbolizes Sylvia's dedication and connection to nature. Sylvia has a special connection to and love for nature. She immediately...

Latest answer posted October 6, 2008 12:32 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is the mood of the story "A White Heron"? How do you feel when you read this story?

There are several "moods" of this story, among them suspense (in wondering if Sylvia will tell the hunter when she sees the white heron) and urgency (because of the hunter's desire to add...

Latest answer posted April 30, 2008 4:28 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

Compare the two main characters in "A White Heron" by Sarah Orne Jewett.  

Sarah Orne Jewett's "A White Heron" portrays a segment of the life of a nine year old city girl who has come to stay with her grandmother in the country. The narrator explains that Sylvia has...

Latest answer posted September 26, 2012 3:12 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is Sylvia's attitude about money in "A White Heron" by Sarah Orne Jewett?

The main character (protagonist) in "A White Heron," by Sarah Orne Jewett, is a young girl named Sylvia. She lives on a farm with her grandmother, but she has not always lived there. She came to...

Latest answer posted August 9, 2013 9:39 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

How would you describe Sylvia's relationship with the stranger?

Sylvia’s relationship with the stranger is a strange mixture of companionship and rivalry. Sylvia is a shy child, and so she is afraid of the stranger at first, but after spending some time with...

Latest answer posted May 3, 2019 8:19 pm UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

How would you describe Sylvia?

In "A White Heron," Sylvia's name is an appropriate one for her since it is derived from the Latin word silva, which means "forest." Thus, it seems natural that Sylvia should be content in the...

Latest answer posted July 7, 2017 7:27 pm UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

Consider Sylvia's grandmother. Define her relationship with Sylvia. How is her relationship with her son relevant to...

The relationship between Sylvia and her grandmother is a good one. Mrs. Tilley seems to possess a better understanding of Sylvia and what makes her happy than Sylvia's mother did. Sylvia's...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2016 4:37 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

How can "The White Heron" be understood as an initiation story?

“The White Heron” is an initiation story on two levels. As a tale of maturity, it features a complete initiation. As Sarah learns the value of personal integrity, she is initiated into an aspect of...

Latest answer posted January 11, 2019 10:47 pm UTC

3 educator answers

A White Heron

What is one motif in "A White Heron" by Sarah Orne Jewett?

Motifs are recurring symbols which support the themes or main ideas in any story. In A White Heron, the young sportsman's gun is a recurring motif. To Sylvia, the gun represents strange emotions...

Latest answer posted July 28, 2016 4:09 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," Jewett speaks to the intrusion of the other/outsider in established geographical locations and...

The young Sylvia is completely at home in her woodland environment, so much so that the story calls her a child of a nature. Her insider status is established from the start, when we learn that...

Latest answer posted January 28, 2020 3:37 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

How are Sylvia and the stranger similar?  How are they different?  Why did Sylvia not tell the stranger about the heron?

Sylvia and the stranger are similar in that they both have (or claim to have) a real appreciation for the beauty of nature. Just as Sylvia has a special appreciation for the birds, so does he. He...

Latest answer posted February 20, 2016 11:54 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What was the importance of this discovery to the little girl? How does the author show this through point of view and...

Sylvia discovers her own morality with regard to the natural world after she goes on a few bird hunting jaunts with the young man who is hoping to add to his collection of taxidermied birds. Though...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2020 8:47 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

How does she fit with the forest creatures in "The White Heron"?

The animals of the forest seem not to feel threatened or alarmed by Sylvia's presence at all. Even though she is typically not in the forest so late as she is at the story's beginning, the animals...

Latest answer posted December 11, 2019 11:44 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

Pick a quotation from "A White Heron" to illustrate the author's style of writing. Explain why you picked this...

There are many different aspects of style that could be selected to talk about, however one of the most interesting to my mind is the final paragraph that comes at the end of the story, when the...

Latest answer posted September 4, 2011 9:34 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

In Sarah Orne Jewett's "A White Heron," how are the names of Sylvia and Mrs. Tilley appropriate to this story?

Sylvia is the female version of the Latin name, Silvius. Silvius was notable in Roman mythology: ...named after his place of birth, Silva being the Latin word for forest or wood. As for Mrs....

Latest answer posted February 5, 2012 2:08 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What does the young man hope that Sylvia will show him in "A White Heron"? 1st chapter.

The young man hopes that Sylvia will show him the nesting place of a rare white heron he has spotted in the area. The man is an ornithologist, or someone who studies birds. His hobby is to find...

Latest answer posted May 10, 2008 8:48 am UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," could the white heron be a symbol of Sylvia herself? How are the two similar?

It is true that the white heron and Sylvia share some common characteristics. They are both isolated and alone in the woods, they are both sought after, Sylvia for her knowledge of the woods and...

Latest answer posted January 29, 2009 2:06 pm UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What do Sylvia and the heron have in common?

Sylvia and the heron are both elusive and mysterious creatures. Sylvia's tendency is to keep to herself and those people she knows well -- like her grandmother and her cow; she is made very...

Latest answer posted April 7, 2016 12:29 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

what is the structure of the story "A White Heron" by Sarah Orne Jewett?

The story is structured as a bildungsroman or rite of passage story. Sylvia is challenged by her feelings for the hunter to leave the world of innocence for that of experience. She has already...

Latest answer posted November 29, 2012 4:19 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is the white heron's secret in the short story "A White Heron"?

The white heron's secret is the location of its nest, which the young hunter has been unable to locate for himself. He asks for Sylvia's help, and she stays awake all night thinking of how to learn...

Latest answer posted April 17, 2019 5:46 pm UTC

2 educator answers

A White Heron

In "A White Heron," what images are used to reveal Sylvia's relationship with nature?

Your original question had to be edited as it actually contained three separate questions. Please note that enotes regulations state that you are only able to ask one question, and that no multiple...

Latest answer posted August 23, 2011 5:35 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

how does the wretched dry geranium differ from the flowers in the forest?

The difference appears to be that in the forest there is strength and thriving growth, in comparison to the wilted potted plant found in the town. The ‘wretched geranium’ is a comparison with...

Latest answer posted February 8, 2012 9:14 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What are the objects that represent Sylvia?  Please provide explanations.

At the beginning of the story, Sylvia is compared to a flower: she had "tried to grow for eight years" in the city but could not. "She thought often with wistful compassion of a wretched dry...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2016 2:27 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

Why does Sylvia remain silent in "A White Heron"? How is that silence more powerful than a denial? Use evidence to...

Sylvia remains silent and doesn't speak because she doesn't want to betray the loyalty of the white heron. When the handsome hunter, who manages to charm Sylvia, asks her where the beautiful bird...

Latest answer posted August 23, 2019 8:16 am UTC

1 educator answer

A White Heron

What is the relationship between man and nature from Sylvia's perspective in "A White Heron"?

Perhaps the relationship between man and nature is best stated in Jewett's description of Sylvia and the old cow of her grandmother, The companions followed the shady woodroad, the cow taking slow...

Latest answer posted June 17, 2013 8:21 am UTC

2 educator answers

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