What is the theme of “Marigolds”?

Updated 21 March, 2023
The theme of "Marigolds" is the loss of innocence and the realization that the world can be a cruel and unfair place. The story centers around Lizabeth, a young girl who is struggling to understand her place in the world and cope with the poverty and racism in her community. Her actions, including destroying Miss Lottie's prized marigolds, are a symbol of her frustration and anger with the world around her. However, as the story progresses, Lizabeth comes to a realization that her actions were wrong and that she needs to show compassion and empathy towards others. Through this, she gains a greater understanding of the world and learns an important lesson about the importance of kindness and compassion.
Detailed answer:

The theme of "Marigolds" is the loss of innocence and the harsh realities of the world. Throughout the story, Lizabeth and her friends are depicted as innocent children who are still learning about the world around them. However, as the story progresses, the characters are forced to confront the harsh realities of poverty, racism, and inequality. The destruction of Miss Lottie's marigolds serves as a metaphor for the destruction of innocence and the loss of hope. The author shows that the world is not always fair or just and that people are often driven to desperate actions in order to cope with their circumstances.

The story also explores the theme of empathy and compassion. Lizabeth initially views Miss Lottie as an object of ridicule and scorn, but as she comes to understand the difficulties that Miss Lottie faces, she begins to feel empathy towards her. This is exemplified in the scene where Lizabeth helps to clean up Miss Lottie's destroyed marigolds. This act of kindness represents a significant shift in Lizabeth's character, as she comes to understand the importance of compassion and empathy towards others.

Ultimately, the theme of "Marigolds" is a poignant commentary on the human experience. It speaks to the universal struggle to find meaning and purpose in a world that can be both beautiful and cruel. The story offers a message of hope and redemption, reminding us that even in the darkest of times, there is always the possibility for growth, change, and renewal.

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