Faraway Women and the "Atlantic Monthly"
272 pages, 5 9/16 x 8 11/16
7 b&w illus.
Release Date:01 Nov 2019
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Release Date:01 Nov 2019
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Faraway Women and the "Atlantic Monthly"

University of Massachusetts Press
In the first decades of the twentieth century, famed Atlantic Monthly editor Ellery Sedgwick chose to publish a group of nontraditional writers he later referred to as "Faraway Women," working-class authors living in the western United States far from his base in Boston. Cathryn Halverson surveys these enormously popular Atlantic contributors, among them a young woman raised in Oregon lumber camps, homesteaders in Wyoming, Idaho, and Alberta, and a world traveler who called Los Angeles and Honolulu home.

Faraway Women and the "Atlantic Monthly" examines gender and power as it charts an archival journey connecting the least remembered writers and readers of the time with one of its most renowned literary figures, Gertrude Stein. It shows how distant friends, patrons, publishers, and readers inspired, fostered, and consumed the innovative life narratives of these unlikely authors, and it also tracks their own strategies for seizing creative outlets and forging new protocols of public expression. Troubling binary categories of east and west, national and regional, and cosmopolitan and local, the book recasts the coordinates of early twentieth-century American literature.
Halverson beautifully balances questions raised across a number of scholarly domains, including periodical studies, studies of letters and letter writing, American literary regionalism, and western American literature. She refuses to settle for easy categorical statements about the complex web of relationships in which the four faraway women's texts were embedded.'—Melissa J. Homestead, author of American Women Authors and Literary Property, 1822–1869

'This book redraws the map of American literary history by focusing on working-class, western women writers. Halverson uncovers the ways her subjects' writing shaped the pages of the Atlantic and American literary production more generally.'—Janet Dean, author of Unconventional Politics: Nineteenth-Century Women Writers and U.S. Indian Policy

'Using an impressive blend of historical sources, Halverson provides detailed yet readable accounts of how four little-known Western women writers (whom Sedgwick labeled 'faraway women'), along with Gertrude Stein, worked in collaboration with both Sedgwick and the magazine's community of readers to create fascinating, extremely popular texts for serialization in the Atlantic.'—CHOICE

'Provides insight into female writers' relationships with editors a century ago . . . making the book of interest to magazine historians, particularly those interested in the Atlantic, and researchers interested in gender and literature.'—Journalism History

Halverson's book, Faraway Women and the 'Atlantic Monthly,' offers a vivid overview of the work and adventures of four western women writers, all of whom enjoyed what they saw as the good fortune of publishing their life-writing—developed from correspondence and diaries—in the prestigious Atlantic Monthly . . . Halverson's study breaks important new ground.'—Tulsa Studies in Women's Literature
CATHRYN HALVERSON is a professor of English at Minot State University. She is author of Playing House in the American West: Western Women's Life Narratives, 1839–1987 and Maverick Autobiographies: Women Writers and the American West, 1900–1936.
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