Sarah Orne Jewett's "War Debt" Analytical Essay by Peter Pen

Sarah Orne Jewett's "War Debt"
This paper analyzes the psychological affects of the American civil war as illustrated in Sarah Orne Jewett's short fictional story "War Debt".
# 63066 | 2,030 words | 0 sources | 2005
Published on Dec 20, 2005 in Literature (American) , English (Analysis)

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This paper explains that Sarah Orne Jewett's "A War Debt" is about the journey of the story's main character Tom, who was instructed by his grandmother to return a stolen cup, which his grandfather had recovered during the American civil war , back to its owners in Virginia. The author points out that there is no real climatic event in the story, which makes it very flat; however, the style of the writing, which splits the story between simplistic dialog and extremely descriptive narration, adds a great deal of interest to the text. The paper relates that, like any war, the psychological affects after the American civil war were devastating: Individuals were faced with many hardships and obstacles that came about from their known world crumbling down around them.

From the Paper:

"Sarah Orne Jewett, in her own way, captured this heartache and expressed it in a unique way throughout her story. In many different passages, there are examples of how the war had affected the characters psychologically. Right from the beginning, the reader is introduced to Mrs. Burton, Tom's grandmother, who Jewett described as wearing an unmistakable look of pain and sorrow. As Mrs. Burton explains the story of the cup to Tom and how she wants him to bring it back to its owners, her state of distress is first revealed to the reader: "Every time I have thought of it I have been more and more ashamed to have it in my house. People weren't so shocked by such things at first; they would only be sentimental about the ruined homes, and say that, 'after all, it was the fortune of war.' That cup was stolen."'

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Sarah Orne Jewett's "War Debt" (2005, December 20) Retrieved September 26, 2023, from

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