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Life Cycles of as Depicted in My Antonia

Life Cycles of as Depicted in My Antonia In the past, critics have ad moralized and/or brutalized every writer they could get their pen on. This is seen from criticisms of Henry Adams to William Butler Yeats. These writers critique everything about the writer and his/her works. For instance, many critics criticize Willa Cather's novel, My Antonia. Their criticisms lie on the basis that My Antonia is based on cyclical themes with no structure holding each of the My Antonia's books. In other words, as a collection of five different accounts remembered by the main character, Jim Burden, My Antonia is characterized by a loose plot structure yet the existence of common themes is expressed in a cyclical nature. According to James E. Miller, Jr.'s " My Antonia; A Frontier Drama of Time," Willa Cather's novel, My Antonia, is "defective in structure." (Bloom 51) Its structure is basically based on the narrators', which is Cather herself, point of view about when the main character, Jim Burden, remembers specific moments in an abstract pattern in his life about his Antonia. This is so because the collection of books that make up the novel, My Antonia, is about Willa Cather; the narrator's idea of what and to what point Jim Burden remembers. Miller also states that the novel "lacks focus and abounds in irrelevancies." (Wells 1) This is due to the fact that Cather didn't provide and consistent character portrayal throughout her novel. Another critic, Kim Wells, asserts Miller's opinion on the novel. Because as he states the novel has many "variations from a theme." (Wells 1) For instance the section about the hired girls and also the part when Peter and Pavel, two lonesome Russian Settlers, tell Jim and Antonia a tragic tale that horrifies and fascinates the children. This tale was about when Peter and Pavel drove a sled with a bridal couple across dark, snowy Russian country and were attacked by hordes of ravenous wolves, where the w...

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