American Literature

   Reading Journals for Cather 

Pick the question that you feel that you can answer the most completely.
There is no one question that is "better" than the other one

  1. Explain the importance of the word "Pioneers" to both the book and the larger American culture. Remember that by the time Cather is actually writing this book, people like Alexandra are the previous generation, not the current generation. Cather is writing well after America has made the transition from primarily rural to primarily urban population. answer this journal 
  2. Knowing that Cather herself never chose to live again in Nebraska after graduating from the University, explain as best as you can why she was so nostalgic for the place. In answering this question you may wish to remember that Cather's Nebraska is a popular place to visit all around the world -- Cather is an internationally respected author, and it's the Nebraska novels that drive that reputation. answer this journal

  3. Both Jewett and Cather deal with the conflict between understanding nature and exploiting nature. Explain the difference as shown in these authors. answer this journal

  4. Section III of Part V of O Pioneers! says that there are always dreamers on the frontier. Explain whether you believe that theory, and what these works, especially Cather's, are saying about what happens to those dreamers once the frontier is tamed.    answer this journal

  5. Who are the winners and who are the losers at the end of the novel? What characters have peace, and what have they done to acheive that peace? What characters are suffering distress, and what have they done to deserve that distress? Do these characters deserve their peace and/or distress? Explain your answer as completely as possible.     answer this journal