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The World of Willa Cather's "Neighbour Rosicky"
Transcript of The World of Willa Cather's "Neighbour Rosicky"
Many of Cather's best-known works have roots in her Nebraska childhood
Cather knew many immigrant farm families near Red Cloud
O Pioneers, A Lost Lady,
are clearly set in places resembling Red Cloud
"Neighbour Rosicky' is also placed in a small, rural Nebraska community
“Most of the basic material a writer works with is acquired before the age of fifteen.” -- Willa Cather
Born in Virginia in 1873
Family moved Nebraska in 1883, eventually living in Red Cloud
Moved to Pittsburgh in 1896 to write for the magazine
First collection of short stories published in 1905
, published in 1912
"Neighbour Rosicky" appears in print in 1930
First published in the magazine
Woman's Home Companion
Published in Cather's collection
Themes in story speak to the importance of family, independence, hard work
"Neighbour Rosicky" main characters, differing views
Cather highlights three distinct outlooks -- Immigrant, American, and observer
"Immigrant" outlook stresses importance or family and independence over money
Serves as the educator in the story
Character is almost too good to be true -- essentially a Czech wise man
This "American" character learns and grows the most
Moves from an outlook focused on the material to seeing the importance of family
Her growth to greater awareness comes from interacting with her father-in-law
Dr. Ed Burleigh
This "observer" can be through of as a stand-in for Willa Cather
The reader learns little about the doctor
In the end, Dr. Burleigh clearly sees the worth in Anton Rosicky's way of living a good life
Pavelka farmstead in Webster County, Nebraska, setting of "Neighbour Rosicky"