The World of the Dying and Ignored

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Both Eudora Welty’s short story "A Visit of Charity” and Rebecca Brown’s short story “The Gift of Sweat” share a theme of the unfortunate human condition of illness, mortality, and rejection by the rest of society. In different ways both main characters must face the truth that our fear of the elderly and dying is caused by our blindness to our own mortality. "A Visit of Charity” and “The Gift of Sweat” both have secondary characters that are in a same situation. One is an old lady in a nursing home and the other, Rick who is going to die, both are ignored by society and even their families would not come to visit them. As Welty and Brown indicate in their short stories, both main characters, Mariana and Rick’s caregiver, share similar tasks, but Mariana benefits less because she failed to develop a sensitivity to someone in need. Mariana and Rick’s caregiver have two important similarities. Both are in a position to help someone in need. Welty describes Mariana in “A Visit of a Charity” as a campfire girl with overwhelming fear of visiting a nursing home on a cold and bright day. While she is there, she meets two old women, one who chatters in a submissive way and another who is confined to bed. The old ladies expect someone to visit them. In Brown’s short story “The Gift of Sweat,” she introduces the reader to a compassionate character who is taking care of a housebound friend named Rick. Another similarity is both receive some kind of benefit from their actions. As Welty states in "A Visit of Charity,” Mariana is a campfire girl involved in a charity organization. She is visiting the nursing home so she can earn points in order to win a prize. Like Mariana, Rick’s caregiver also benefits from helping a needy person. She gets paid because she works for a home-care company. The third similarity between the stories is, both main characters brought some

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