The Jilting of Granny Weatherall

by Katherine Anne Porter

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What memories and details suggest Granny's physical and emotional strength?

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In the short story "The Jilting of Granny Weatherall," many details illustrate Granny's physical and emotional strength as she lies on her deathbed.

Granny remembers her physical strength when she "pulled through milk-leg and double pneumonia." She also remembers fencing a hundred acres, planting gardens, making clothes, and cooking food. Granny has had a busy life. Her memories also include spending long nights with "sick horses and sick negroes and sick children." All these memories speak to her physical strength.

Granny's emotional strength is illustrated through her marriage to John and her carrying on with life and raising the children after his death, even though she had been jilted by George. Also, her emotional strength is shown through her survival of the loss of her child Hapsy.

Even though Granny physically survived her jilting by George, she still contemplates the event on her deathbed and wants to see him: "Yes, she had changed her mind after sixty years and she would like to see George." Perhaps Granny has not overcome the jilting, and this would be a sign of her one emotional weakness: not getting over George's betrayal.

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Granny has memories of when she cared for her children and took care of her farm.  She also helped her neighbors by caring for their sick children and their animals.  She also was able to make it through the frustration of being jilted by George.  The jilting is the key in this story. She was able to endure that, but she did carry it with her through the years.  This shows her emotional strength the best.

"For sixty years she had prayed against remembering him and against losing her soul in the deep pit of hell."


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