Examining The Wretched Path Of Anne English Literature Essay

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Quotation 1: "Oh, Mrs. Barry, please forgive me. I did not mean to--to--intoxicate Diana. How could I? Just imagine if you were a poor little orphan girl that kind people had adopted and you had just one bosom friend in all the world. Do you think you would intoxicate her on purpose? I thought it was only raspberry cordial. I was firmly convinced it was raspberry cordial. Oh, please don't say that you won't let Diana play with me any more. If you do you will cover my life with a dark cloud of woe." (XVI, 129)

Experiences: Anne is a stray waif with a wretched past who has been handed down to different people after the death of her parents. Those people treated her in a harsh, unkind and cruel manner. She felt like a maid. She has been sent to the asylum where there was little scope for imagination for her and Anne barely made any friends. Anne's past triggers her to hold on to every bond she makes and craves for a bosom friend. She strives to make a life-long alliance with people she considers to have kindred spirits such as Diana Barry. In this quote Anne is asking for Mrs. Barry's forgiveness, since she accidently gave wine to Diana. This results in Diana not being allowed to play with Anne anymore. This leaves Anne with no bosom-friend. After this, Anne realizes the important of having a close friend and that she should have been more careful of what she was doing. Anne's past influences her to cherish every good moment, hence building up her character as a strong independent girl. Moreover, this results Anne to make more friends in school, although she loves Diana with an infatuation.

Quotation 2: "I just love trees. And there weren't any at all about the asylum, only a few poor weeny-teeny things out in front with little whitewashed cagey things about them. They just looked like orphans themselves. It used to make me want to cry. I used to say to them, `Oh, you POOR little things! If you were out in a great big woods with other trees all around you and little mosses and Junebells growing over your roots and a brook not far away and birds singing in you branches, you could grow, couldn't you? But you can't where you are. I know just exactly how you feel, little tree"'.

Experiences: when Anne was in the asylum she liked looking at different things so her imagination can take over. But, when she looked out her window there were only a few tiny trees, she wasn't able to imagine anything pleasant; there was no scope for imagination. The passage above shows that the trees represent some kind of hope that Anne has, hope that she will be out of the asylum, as there is always hope for trees to grow. Nevertheless, it symbolizes her loneliness. Anne doesn't really have anyone around her especially a certain individual to care for her. However, when she left the asylum she met kind people at Green Gables; for instance, Matthew and Marilla Cuthbert. Although Marilla doesn't express any emotion, one can tell she has a wry sense of humour and also a loving heart. It is evident that Marilla loves Anne due to her fair treatment and strict rules which later one helps shape Anne's character as a behaved and successful individual. Moreover, Anne meets Diana Barry they become bosom friends. Anne realizes the importance of having a close friend which influences her to thank God later on. Basically, Anne educates herself through each event in her life, from every experience she learns something new and tries to enforce it in her life.

Quotation 3: "Now, Anne, I noticed last night that you threw your clothes all about the floor when you took them off. That is a very untidy habit, and I can't allow it at all. As soon as you take off any article of clothing fold it neatly and place it on the chair. I haven't any use at all for little girls who aren't neat." (VII, 49)

Expectation: These lines are spoken by Marilla Cuthbert to Anne Shirley when she was to spend her first night at Green Gables. Marilla is a strict woman with little sense of humour who cares a lot about morals and etiquettes. Although, Anne is only eleven-years old, Marilla imposes certain expectations on her. For instance, she expects Anne to be lady-like and have good manners; such as cleaning after herself and being neat. Such expectations influence Anne to build up her character by learning how to obey people, as this shapes Anne for the better- she has someone to discipline her, resulting a more lady-like characteristic.

Quotation 4: "Rachel is too outspoken. But that is no excuse for such behavior on your part. She was a stranger and an elderly person and my visitor-all three very good reasons why you should have been respectful to her. You were rude and saucy and"--Marilla had a saving inspiration of punishment--"you must go to her and tell her you are very sorry for your bad temper and ask her to forgive you."(IX, 68)

Expectations: Marilla scolds Anne for her behaviour, criticizing her when she screams at Mrs. Rachel Lynde. Upon realizing Anne's temper, Marilla punishes her by asking her to apologize to Rachel; when Anne refuses, Marilla tells her to go to her room and not to come down until she accepts to do so. Marilla uses an extravagant method in shaping Anne's character; she influences Anne to realize her fault even though Rachel made fun of her looks. Anne makes social blunders and quickly tries to follow the rules of social conduct and morality that other children have already learned when they were young. This allows Anne to learn the essence of morality, as the novel progresses Anne learns to control her temper. This results her to overcome certain challenges that have been enforced on her.

Quotation 5: Anne Shirley, do you mean to tell me you believe all that wicked nonsense of your own imagination?" "Not believe exactly," faltered Anne. "At least, I don't believe it in daylight. But after dark, Marilla, it's different. That is when ghosts walk."(XX, 164)

Identity: From the start of the novel, Anne's imagination runs wild, from changing places names and her name to Cordelia. Throughout the book Anne realizes her imagination can get a bit out of hand and sometimes be harmful. For instance, when her imagination names a path to "The Haunted Wood" where ghosts appear in all shapes and sizes, she terrifies her own self with what she imagines. Anne finally accepts that she can get caught up in her imaginations and that she should be careful of what she imagines because later on it gives her a negative affect. It is evident that Anne has deep feelings about certain things; she hates and loves with an infatuation and dreams with spirit. Anne is naïve and still innocent as she is only eleven years old, but things may change as the novel progresses. Anne is a good hearted child; she constantly daydreams allowing her imaginations to pull her away from reality. However, this quote represents that Anne finally realizes that day dreaming can be dangerous at some point and that she should try to stick to reality.

Hypothesis Testing

Childhood is a word that varies in meaning significantly depending on time and place. What is expected of children has changed throughout history, and even now, differs from place to place. This concept is obvious in Anne of Green Gables. One thing that children tend to have in common is the innocent, naïve and unbiased way in which they see the world. In this case, the protagonists of the novel, Anne Shirley experiences different calamities that help shape her character due to her personality.

It is evident that Anne has deep feelings about certain things; she hates and loves with an infatuation and dreams with spirit. Anne is a good hearted child; she constantly daydreams allowing her imaginations to pull her away from reality. The quotation below reveals Anne's attitude, and how she wants to learn more about the world; being unaware of the difficulties and challenges that it may bring.

"Isn't it splendid to think of all the things there are to find out about? It just makes me feel glad to be alive-it's such an interesting world." (Page 14-15)

Anne is petite in size; her face is white and thin covered in freckles with two braids of very thick red hair. Anne indisputably starts off as a dogged, clumsy yet eager chatterbox with full of imaginations.

"It's such an interesting world. It wouldn't be half so interesting if we knew all about everything, would it? There'd be no scope for imagination then, would there? But am I talking too much? People always tell me that I do. Would you rather I didn't talk? If you say so, I'll stop. I can stop when I make up my mind to it, although it's difficult." (Page 14-15)

Evidently, Anne is talkative with a quirky charm and irrepressible imagination.  She is delighted with the wonders of the world especially if her curiosity takes over, she'd rather find out about things then already know about them, as proven in the passage above. Daydreams interrupt Anne's chores and conversations, pulling her away from reality. Anne is pleased with this escape; however she often comes in conflict with Avonlea's expectations of good behaviour. Anne's imaginations lead to household disasters, such as baking a cake and being afraid to walk during the night, of fear of ghosts that she made up. Marilla is worried that Anne will be disappointed when reality doesn't live up to her expectations. Anne constantly strives to please Marilla. Nevertheless, Anne slowly matures realizing she should control her imaginations and face reality.

Anne will continue to discover new experiences and put the expectations of what Marilla wants from her to the side. However as she grows older, Anne will mature and realize that her imaginations can have a negative affect on her. She may learn to control her imaginations and face reality instead of making 'a perfect world' in her mind. Eventually, she will discover her true identity, devoid of all illusions and come of age.

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