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My Ántonia (1918)

door Willa Cather

Andere auteurs: Zie de sectie andere auteurs.

Reeksen: The Prairie Trilogy (3)

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13,602286438 (3.92)991
Classic Literature. Fiction. HTML:

My Ántonia, first published 1918, is one of Willa Cather's greatest works. It is the last novel in the Prairie trilogy, preceded by O Pioneers! and The Song of the Lark. My Ántonia tells the stories of several immigrant families who move out to rural Nebraska to start new lives in America, with a particular focus on a Bohemian family, the Shimerdas, whose eldest daughter is named Ántonia. The book's narrator, Jim Burden, arrives in the fictional town of Black Hawk, Nebraska, on the same train as the Shimerdas, as he goes to live with his grandparents after his parents have died. Jim develops strong feelings for Ántonia, something between a crush and a filial bond, and the reader views Ántonia's life, including its attendant struggles and triumphs, through that… (meer)

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1910s (25)
Elevenses (265)
AP Lit (246)
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Engels (275)  Duits (3)  Spaans (2)  Italiaans (2)  Frans (1)  Piratentaal (1)  Alle talen (284)
1-5 van 284 worden getoond (volgende | toon alle)
I applaud the ethereal quality of the prose and Cather's talent in beautifying a seemingly vapid scene on the prairie, shrouded in a rustic mistiness which is tailored to a wistful resonance of an age long gone by, but what ruined it all was the ever-platonic and flabby narrator, stifling me with his misguided zeal. I would not have opted for Jim's schmaltzy narration, which felt unsuitable and degrading at times, and particularly presumptuous to Ántonia's character, walking around goggle-eyed as a second-hand observer with no intentions of actually living his own life. I think Antonia might have sufficed for a spirited puppy instead of a loitering loafer. ( )
  TheBooksofWrath | Apr 18, 2024 |
This deceptively simple tale contains depths of heart, empathy, and grace. The story is told by Jim Burden, a young boy being raised by his grandmother and grandfather on a remote Nebraska farm in the 1880s, but he shares protagonist duties with Antonia (pronounced an-toe-nee-ah), the daughter of an immigrant family struggling, like so many others immigrant at that time, to realize the American Dream.

Jim and Antonia are thrown together by proximity, but end up forging a friendship that is sweetly innocent and that endures over decades. The key is the depth of respect they have for each other, Antonia admiring Jim for his intelligence and character, Jim admiring Antonia for her transparent generosity and goodness.

Along the way Cather introduces us to the denizens of Black Hawk, a rural township populated by a melting pot of Americans and immigrants, primarily Scandinavians, Bohemians (modern day Czechia), and Russians. Make no mistake, the lives they live can be harsh: grueling (seemingly ceaseless) physical labor, bitter weather, poverty, homesickness, disappointment, loss. Yet somehow Cather's characters also find time to laugh, sing, dance, and acknowledge the profound beauty of the natural world that surrounds them.

I loved everything about this novel. I loved the authenticity of the characters. I loved the vignettes of small town rural life - the dress shops and dance tents, clotheslines and cowhands, sod houses and sleighs. I love Cather's bold choice to make her tale character- rather than plot-driven. Her respect and empathy for the the immigrants she portrays. Her effortless storytelling and gorgeous portrayals of the beauty of midwestern prairies. Most of all, I loved witnessing the beautiful relationship between Jim and Antonia, and how their friendship helps to forge their characters.

Part coming-of-age tale, part homage to the American Dream (hard work = prosperity), part celebration of the beauty of the American Midwest, part panegyric to the power of human connection, this truly is an American classic. ( )
  Dorritt | Apr 13, 2024 |
Unfortunately, I had a lot of several-day breaks in re-reading this book, which I had first read nearly half a century ago. Knowing so much more about cultural history now increased my enjoyment of this work significantly, but also knowing more about gender bias rendered Jim Burden a far less credible narrator than I thought he was in my early adolescence. Nevertheless, this novel tells a tale about loss and change at a time in which developments in communications and transportation changed the pace of life at dizzying speeds. Willa Cather beautifully knitted together the sense of loss — former homelands, pioneering agrarian life, childhood past — with ongoing life. ( )
  bschweiger | Feb 4, 2024 |
This was such a gorgeous book. I was sorry to get to the end. Cather evokes the time and place so wonderfully. I will seek out more of her work. ( )
  mlevel | Jan 22, 2024 |
The word for this novel is "exquisite". There isn't a lot of story, but there is deft characterization, and beautiful descriptive language that turns the commonplace into the iconic. Page after page I marveled at Cather's ability to show the beauty of landscape, the vitality of young children at play, the difficulties of early 20th century life on the prairies of North America...all in terms that sound both original and inevitable. And by the time I reached the last chapters, the adult Antonia was speaking in my Slovak grandmother's voice. I said somewhere else that this book feels like Little House on the Prairie for adults. That's a bit glib, perhaps, but true still. And I hate to leave this world of hers, hard as it sometimes is to live in it. "Brilliant" is another word for it. All five stars.
January 2014 ( )
  laytonwoman3rd | Dec 27, 2023 |
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» Andere auteurs toevoegen (33 mogelijk)

AuteursnaamRolType auteurWerk?Status
Willa Catherprimaire auteuralle editiesberekend
Benda, W. T.IllustratorSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Byatt, A.S.IntroductieSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Colacci, DavidVertellerSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Homer, WinslowArtiest omslagafbeeldingSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Murphy, John J.IntroductieSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Norris, KathleenVoorwoordSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Sharistanian, JanetRedacteurSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Svoboda, TereseNawoordSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd
Tapper, GordonIntroductieSecundaire auteursommige editiesbevestigd

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I first heard of Ántonia on what seemed to me an interminable journey across the great midland plain of North America. I was ten years old then; I had lost both my father and mother within a year, and my Virginia relatives were sending me out to my grandparents, who lived in Nebraska. I traveled in the care of a mountain boy, Jake Marpole, one of the “hands” on my father’s old farm under the Blue Ridge, who was now going West to work for my grandfather. Jake’s experience of the world was not much wider than mine. He had never been in a railway train until the morning when we set out together to try our fortunes in a new world.
"When a writer begins to work with his own material," said Willa Cather, in a retrospective preface to her first novel, Alexander's Bridge, "he has less and less choice about the moulding of it. (Preface)
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He placed this book in my grandmother's hands, looked at her entreatingly, and said, with an earnestness which I shall never forget, "Te-e-ach, te-e-ach my Ántonia!"
Because he talked so little, his words had a peculiar force; they were not worn dull from constant use.
Lena was Pussy so often that she finally said she wouldn't play any more.
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Classic Literature. Fiction. HTML:

My Ántonia, first published 1918, is one of Willa Cather's greatest works. It is the last novel in the Prairie trilogy, preceded by O Pioneers! and The Song of the Lark. My Ántonia tells the stories of several immigrant families who move out to rural Nebraska to start new lives in America, with a particular focus on a Bohemian family, the Shimerdas, whose eldest daughter is named Ántonia. The book's narrator, Jim Burden, arrives in the fictional town of Black Hawk, Nebraska, on the same train as the Shimerdas, as he goes to live with his grandparents after his parents have died. Jim develops strong feelings for Ántonia, something between a crush and a filial bond, and the reader views Ántonia's life, including its attendant struggles and triumphs, through that

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