The Struggles Of Growing Up In Poverty English Literature Essay

In the short narrative Marigolds by Eugenia Collier, a miss named Elizabeth and her household battle through life in the clip of the Great Depression. Elizabeth is an African American miss that is on the threshold of muliebrity. Elizabeth ‘s household is really hapless and is forced to populate in a shantytown. Elizabeth and her household have to populate through the battle of poorness, poignant and meaningful statements in the household, and Elizabeth is caught between the helter-skelter emotions of a kid and a adult female.

Elizabeth & A ; her household are fighting through the “ penalty ” called poorness. Elizabeth ‘s trouble get bying with her poorness is chiefly what influences her to destruct the marigolds in Miss. Lottie ‘s pace. In the beginning of the narrative Collier expresses an image which resembles the town where Elizabeth is forced to populate an unprivileged life. Elizabeth merely “ seem [ s ] to retrieve [ the ] dust-the brown, crumbly dust. ” She merely can retrieve the dust because it, like the whole town around her, reminds her of the poorness she can non get away. Another obscure memory she “ retrieve [ s ] , [ is ] a superb splash of cheery yellow against the dust-Miss Lottie ‘s marigolds. ” Elizabeth remembers the beautiful marigolds in Miss Lottie ‘s pace and how they did n’t suit in with the ugliness of everything around it. Elizabeth realizes that the marigolds are excessively beautiful and that “ They interfered with the perfect ugliness of the topographic point ; they were excessively beautiful ; they said excessively much that we could non understand ; they did non do sense. ” Elizabeth emphasizes that the marigolds are excessively beautiful to be in a topographic point full of ugly and ragged things. After seeing everything around her in this ugly, hapless manner, the marigolds confuse her and are about excessively much for her to manage. Her incapableness to grok the abstract beauty of the marigolds drives her impulse to destruct and acquire rid of the confusion.

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Elizabeth invariably has to confront jobs in her household, and this leads to tension which finally leads to the concluding devastation of the marigolds. Elizabeth ‘s hope dramatically lessens when she listens in on her parents speaking one dark. When Elizabeth hears her male parent complain to her female parent, “ It ai n’t right. Ai n’t no adult male ought to eat his adult female ‘s nutrient twelvemonth in and twelvemonth out. ” Elizabeth feels that before her male parent was strong like a stone and her ma was delicate, now everything has changed and her pa is broken into pieces. Elizabeth ‘s female parent attempts to alleviate her male parent: “ Look, we ai n’t hungering. I git paid every hebdomad, and Mrs Ellis is existent nice about giving me things. ” Finally, Elizabeth ‘s male parent broke down even farther and he “ sobbed, aloud and distressingly, and cried impotently. ” The adult male of the family is interrupting down, and does non cognize where he stands any longer nor does Elizabeth. When Elizabeth realizes that her male parent can non back up her household devastates her and Elizabeth is broken by that realisation. She does non hold a stable set of parents who can even trust on each other or themselves, go forthing her to experience lost and hopeless. Elizabeth becomes insecure by the fact of her male parent weeping. When she realizes she can non stand any longer confusion in her household, she goes to wake her brother up and so blowholes out her angst on the marigolds and this besides shows some immaturity in Elizabeth.

Elizabeth is a immature adult female who does n’t cognize where to put herself, as a kid or as a adult female. Elizabeth refers to the “ Joy and fury and wild carnal gladfulness and shame become tangled together in the motley skein of fourteen-going on-fifteen as I recall that lay waste toing minute when I was all of a sudden more adult female than kid. ” All the things that is mentioned which seems to be tangled in what she as an eternal piece of narration, are largely contradictions. Elizabeth switches between a kid and a adult female several times during the class of the short narrative. One clip when she acts like a adult female she mentions that “ Suddenly I was ashamed, and I did non like being ashamed. ” This was right after the first destroying of the marigolds, and alternatively of fall ining with the childs in gaiety, she alternatively felt ashamed as a adult female. Elizabeth besides turns into a kid in the narrative. In a certain instance she has to make up one’s mind between both of them: “ I merely stood there peering through the shrubs, torn between desiring to fall in the merriment and feeling that it was all a spot silly. ” Elizabeth ends up being less mature than her brother in the terminal. When she destroys the marigolds for the last clip, her brother support on seeking to halt her: “ Lizabeth, halt, delight halt! ” This proves that in fact she ended up more as a kid so a adult female, and her brother is more adult male than kid. At the terminal the confusion she had with the marigolds is gone and she realizes why they are at that place.

After all the events have taken topographic point, Elizabeth learns to get by with her poorness, Elizabeth is n’t confused every bit much about her household kineticss, and she becomes a adult female. Elizabeth learns that adulthood takes clip and how to get by with emotions and angst. Elizabeth becomes a adult female, and most people finally become adult females some earlier some late, but Elizabeth learned something while going a adult female. All people take what they have for granted, but some people can non hold the chance to hold things that most people use day-to-day, as an illustration a cell phone, some people can non afford a cell phone which we as most people use on a regular basis.


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