'Realism In Cather's O Pioneers'

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In the story O Pioneers, Cather presents the frontier in a way that writers generally describe in a romantic point of view. Cather raises the story in a naturalistic way, where the divide always has ways of making the situation worse. However, despite Cather writing the story, who has such naturalistic views about life, some areas portray romantic or realistic values. The title of her book, O Pioneers, comes from the romanticised poem by Walt Whitman about the frontier. This could foreshadow the small pieces of romanticism/realism within the story. Based on her story, Cather’s views clearly revolve around naturalism. Not even through part I, Cather has already introduced readers into a naturalistic story. An example, from the end of part I,…show more content…
Lastly, Cather also incorporates some realism into her story. Although hard to spot, her realism and romantic segments combine. In the previous quote, “Alexandra watched the shimmering pool dreamily, but eventually her eyes went back to the sorghum patch south of the barn, where she was planning to make her new pig corral,” although romantic, it also has realistic qualities because she came back from her daydreaming and began to focus on the task at hand. Another quote, from Carl’s point of view, “In the draw below, his gun in his hands, was Emil, advancing cautiously, with a young woman beside him… At the moment when they came in sight of the bright spot of water, he heard a whirr of wings and the ducks shot up into the air. There was a sharp crack from the gun, and five of the birds fell to the ground.” This quote has realistic qualities because, plain and simple, Emil had shot and killed the five ducks. In conclusion, Cather personally desires naturalism over romanticism and realism. Large portions of the story remain entirely naturalistic. She challenges the norms and goes against what people think. This includes viewing situations as getting worse or just horrible in every possible aspect. However, despite all of this, she still believes people deserve to live
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