Freeman, Mary E. Wilkins
Much of Mary E. Wilkins Freeman's work concerns the daily realities of life in the provincial New England towns of the late nineteenth century. Valued today for her insight into the minds of women, she sometimes uses supernatural elements as a tool to penetrate the psychological depths of her female characters. Her story ʺLuella Millerʺ concerns a beautiful, graceful woman whom people feel compelled to serve. But it becomes a kind of horror tale, because those providing for Luella seem to extinguish themselves in the process. This story raises disturbing questions about the potential dark side of service and our relationship with those whom we serve.
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Everbody's Magazine in December 1902
How much should I give? What, if anything, might limit my giving?How do we respond to the suffering of others? How would we like others to respond to our own?How does healing occur? What makes it possible?How do we know what someone needs?How should we respond to people and communities in need?What are the limits of my ability to help or serve?
Civically Engaged Reader