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Willa Cather and her writing. 1873-1947. Early Years Born December 7, 1873 Raised in Red Cloud, Nebraska Grew up in a big family; many siblings- didn't.

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Presentation on theme: "Willa Cather and her writing. 1873-1947. Early Years Born December 7, 1873 Raised in Red Cloud, Nebraska Grew up in a big family; many siblings- didn't."— Presentation transcript:

1 Willa Cather and her writing

2 Early Years Born December 7, 1873 Raised in Red Cloud, Nebraska Grew up in a big family; many siblings- didn't like her sisters Always a Tom Boy Started school at age 10

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4 Later Years Went to Nebraska University-Unusual for a woman First went for science degree, then switched her major to English During college, went by William and wore masculine clothing, had a boy's haircut Acted in many plays throughout college

5 Later Years (cont.) After graduating from college, she did a variety of things: 1900-Served as English HS teacher in PA 1902-Went to France; brought about her love for the French culture Became an editor for a magazine in NY Received honorary degrees from various top colleges Lived with Edith Lewis (significant other) till her death

6 Her Writing After college, she grew angry: critics began to dismiss her as a Romantic, nostalgic writer who could not cope with the present Because of this, her work during the Great Depression lacked social relevance and she became reclusive

7 Works April Twilights, a collection of verses Troll Garden, a collection of short stories: A Wagner Matinee Alexander's Bridge, her first novel The Song of the Lark My Atonia

8 A Wagner Matinee Summary: A Wagner Matinee is about a man that has received a letter saying that his aunt is going to be coming to town, it ask him to take care of her while she is there. The man remembers his aunt fondly and wants to show her a good time while she is in town, so he decides to take her to an opera because she was trained in music when she was younger. Themes: Hardship and desolation on pioneer life The sustaining power of music on the human spirit

9 Relations to Writing Georgiana was based off of Cather's real aunt She grew up in Nebraska, where part of the story takes place

10 Style Very detailed, play by play action: Ex. In describing Georgiana Style of Clarity and Beauty: The music present in A Wagner Matinee Admired Henry James Favorites: Dickens, Thackeray, Emerson, Hawthorne, Tolstoy Wrote unique fiction stories

11 Themes and Issues Continuously wrote from a boy's point of view Theme of Love: Ex. Aunt Georgiana loves Boston, music, and her husband; Clark loves and respects his aunt because she taught him and sacrificed a lot for him Theme of Hardship: Ex. Georgiana lives in a drudgery, pioneer part of Nebraska

12 Theme (cont.) Her writing reflects regionalism by focusing on the characters' actions and emotions Clark has grown to understand that life is about choices and the consequences of those choices are excepted fully; for the aunt, she made the choice to elope and forget her life as a person that has money

13 Legacy and Honors Willa Cather Pioneer Memorial and new Willa Cather Foundation was funded to support the study of her life and work and to maintain many sites in her hometown Library Branch location opened in her name Elected for the Nebraska Hall of Fame Placed on a stamp in 1973 University of Nebraska residences all named after her

14 Bibliography At, K.k. "Willa Cather - Biography and Works. Search Texts, Read Online. Discuss." The Literature Network: Online Classic Literature, Poems, and Quotes. Essays & Summaries. Web. 13 Oct "A Wagner Matinee - ENotes.com Reference." ENotes - Literature Study Guides, Lesson Plans, and More. Web. 17 Oct "A Wagner Matinee." Wagner Matinee. Web. 14 Oct "Willa Cather." A Wagner Matinee. Web. 14 Oct

15 By: Mikayla Sycks & Clare Sorensen


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