A White Heron Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 43 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A White Heron.
This section contains 653 words
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Flesh vs. Spirit

When an appealing ornithologist comes to the Maine woods, young Sylvia must decide whether to please her new friend by showing him the nesting place of the heron he wishes to kill for his collection, or remain loyal to her animal companions. Although the nine-year-old girl would never consider her situation in these terms, the decision Sylvia must make is the choice between flesh and spirit— between earthly human pleasures and the natural world. The narrator states the conflict in a sigh directed at the reader: "Alas, if the great wave of human interest which flooded for the first time this dull little life should sweep away the satisfaction of an existence heart to heart with nature and the dumb life of the forest!" The hunter's presence represents two aspects of fleshly desire. First, he offers Sylvia ten dollars if she will betray the heron...

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This section contains 653 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A White Heron Study Guide
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A White Heron from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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