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Unter den Hügeln die kommende Zeit (1913)

von Willa Cather

Weitere Autoren: Siehe Abschnitt Weitere Autoren.

Reihen: The Prairie Trilogy (1)

MitgliederRezensionenBeliebtheitDurchschnittliche BewertungDiskussionen / Diskussionen
5,6651541,492 (3.88)1 / 500
Cather presents the story of the Nebraska prairie. Alexandra Bergson, daughter of Swedish immigrant farmers, is devoted to the land and suffers the hardships of prairie life.
Kürzlich hinzugefügt vonmattorsara, jntjesussaves, collapsedbuilding, private Bibliothek, KVML, smj0, jen.walnutvalley, ahef1963, SaintNick413
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What a beautiful book! It's hard to believe it was written over 100 years ago - it has a very modern sensibility.

The main character Alexandra emigrated from Sweden with her family at a young age. Alexandra's father dies a few years after settling the family on a homestead in Nebraska. As he's dying, the father realizes Alexandra has more business and practical sense than her brothers, so he leaves the farm in her care.

The remaining family has good times and bad times financially. They also experience both joy and tragedies. Throughout the book there's a feeling on not quite fatalism - more of a feeling that everything that happens is just as it should be. Even terrible events.

I love reading a classic like this and discovering why it's considered "classic". ( )
  sriddell | Aug 6, 2022 |
Summary: The first of the Great Plains Trilogy, the story of Alexandra Bergson’s love of the Nebraska hills, the costly choices she made, and the ill-fated love of her brother Emil.

I’ve only recently discovered Willa Cather, and realized that I have missed reading one of America’s great writers. This work, the first volume in the Great Plains Trilogy centers around Alexandra Bergstrom, a strong, red-haired woman. As she helped her dying father, it became clear that she and not her two older brothers, truly understood how to make the farm succeed that he had labored so hard to establish in the hills of Nebraska. When he died, she took over its management. When her brothers wanted to sell the farm during the drought, she went to see the river land they wanted to move to, and returned to propose that they mortgage the farm to add to the lands, her faith being so strong. In one of the pivotal passages of the book, Cather writes of her:

"For the first time, perhaps, since that land emerged from the waters of geologic ages, a human face was set toward it with love and yearning. It seemed beautiful to her, rich and strong and glorious. Her eyes drank in the breadth of it, until her tears blinded her. Then the Genius of the Divide, the great, free spirit which breathes across it, must have bent lower than it ever bent to a human will before. The history of every country begins in the heart of a man or a woman" (Cather, p. 44).

Under her love, the expanded farm prospers, she buys out her brothers who acquire their own land. With old Ivar, who the brothers want to commit, and farmworkers and young girls to help, the fields, orchards, and stock flourish. But she is growing older, alone. Her one male friend from childhood, Carl Linstrum, his parents having sold the farm to Alexandra, has gone off to seek his fortune, and yet never finds it, secretly struggling to live up to Alexandra’s accomplishments, little realizing that this was not what she wanted.

Sadly, Alexandra also fails to recognize the yearnings drawing together her friend Marie, trapped in an unhappy marriage and her beloved youngest brother Emil, for whom she hoped so much. She sends Emil to help Marie in her troubles, little suspecting the attraction she is helping to fuel. One wonders if she fails to see the desires in others that she had suppressed in herself for so long.

One of the other things Cather captures is the ethnic diversity, each with their own settlements-the Norwegians, the French, the Bohemians, and the intersections between them at festivals, churches and daily life. Each has stereotypes of the others but also friendships, like that between Emil and Amedee, or Alexandra and Marie. Slowly, these different migrants are brought together but the challenges of Nebraska’s upland prairies.

I was also taken by the many descriptions of the land–the paths they walked, the pond where Emil shot the ducks with Marie by his side (a scene pregnant with foreshadowing), the rainstorm that clarified Alexandra’s grief and resolve, and the white mulberry tree. Amid all this, and dominating the whole is the strong character of Alexandra whose love of the land, shrewdness of character, generosity of friendship, and ultimately, a forgiveness that transcends grief makes her one of the great characters of American literature. ( )
  BobonBooks | Jul 27, 2022 |
Loved the 1st half - the struggle with the land and the character Alexandra Bergson. Not so much the doomed love story of the 2nd half... ( )
  apende | Jul 12, 2022 |
Beautifully written and a thorough joy to read. While I started out comparing it to My Antonia, there is a different quality to it and character of Alexandra is more fully explored. There is a quietness and depth to her that I found so compelling. I did not expect the final tragedies until they were sadly inevitable but the whole novel was just a small brilliant gem. Yes, The Song of the Lark remains my favorite but this is very close.
  amyem58 | May 25, 2022 |
At first glance, this read is a pleasant story; but like the rain, it sinks in and thoughts and understanding begin to grow. This could be the story of many of my ancestors. It could be the story of the independent women who settled the wild land and men. It could be the story of repression endured, of the strength of love, and the agony of failure. So many undercurrents are in this tale, as in life. It was a pleasant story, though it dealt with heartache, failure and depression. It is a love song to the land, and those who love the land. ( )
  MrsLee | Apr 28, 2022 |
There isn't a vestige of 'style' as such: for page after page one is dazed at the ineptness of the medium and the triviality of the incidents...
hinzugefügt von danielx | bearbeitenDress and Vanity Fair Magazine (Jan 23, 2015)
 

» Andere Autoren hinzufügen (20 möglich)

AutorennameRolleArt des AutorsWerk?Status
Willa CatherHauptautoralle Ausgabenberechnet
Byatt, A. S.EinführungCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
Lindemann, MarileeHerausgeberCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
Perrin, NoelNachwortCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
Weakley, MarkIllustratorCo-Autoreinige Ausgabenbestätigt
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Prairie Spring

Evening and the flat land,
Rich and sombre and always silent;
The miles of fresh-plowed soil,
Heavy and black, full of strength and harshness;
The growing wheat, the growing weeds,
The toiling horses, the tired men;
The long empty roads,
Sullen fires of sunset, fading,
The eternal, unresponsive sky.
Against all this, Youth,
Flaming like the wild roses,
Singing like the larks over the plowed fields,
Flashing like a star out of the twilight;
Youth with its insupportable sweetness,
Its fierce necessity,
Its sharp desire,
Singing and singing,
Out of the lips of silence,
Out of the earthy dusk.
Widmung
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To the memory of
Sarah Orne Jewett
in whose beautiful and delicate work
there is the perfection
that endures
Erste Worte
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One January day, thirty years ago, the little town of Hanover, anchored on a windy Nebraska tableland, was trying not to be blown away. A mist of fine snowflakes was curling and eddying about the cluster of low drab buildings huddled on the gray prairie, under a gray sky. The dwelling-houses were set about haphazard on the tough prairie sod; some of them looked as if they had been moved in overnight, and others as if they were straying off by themselves, headed straight for the open plain. None of them had any appearance of permanence, and the howling wind blew under them as well as over them. The main street was a deeply rutted road, now frozen hard, which ran from the squat red railway station and the grain “elevator” at the north end of the town to the lumber yard and the horse pond at the south end. On either side of this road straggled two uneven rows of wooden buildings; the general merchandise stores, the two banks, the drug store, the feed store, the saloon, the post-office. The board sidewalks were gray with trampled snow, but at two o’clock in the afternoon the shopkeepers, having come back from dinner, were keeping well behind their frosty windows. The children were all in school, and there was nobody abroad in the streets but a few rough-looking countrymen in coarse overcoats, with their long caps pulled down to their noses. Some of them had brought their wives to town, and now and then a red or a plaid shawl flashed out of one store into the shelter of another. At the hitch-bars along the street a few heavy work-horses, harnessed to farm wagons, shivered under their blankets. About the station everything was quiet, for there would not be another train in until night.
Zitate
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The history of every country begins in the heart of a man or a woman.
People have to snatch at happiness when they can, in this world. It is always easier to lose than to find.
Those fields, colored by various grain! - Mickiewicz
When the road began to climb the first long swells of the Divide, Alexandra hummed an old Swedish hymn, and Emil wondered why his sister looked so happy. Her face was so radiant that he felt shy about asking her. For the first time, perhaps, since that land emerged from the waters of geologic ages, a human face was set toward it with love and yearning. It seemed beautiful to her, rich and strong and glorious. Her eyes drank in the breadth of it, until her tears blinded her. Then the Genius of the Divide, the great, free spirit which breathes across it, must have bent lower than it ever bent to a human will before. The history of every country begins in the heart of a man or a woman.
But that, as Emil himself had more than once reflected, was Alexandra's blind side, and her life had not been of the kind to sharpen her vision. Her training had all been toward the end of making her proficient in what she had undertaken to do. Her personal life, her own realization of herself, was almost a subconscious existence; like an underground river that came to the surface only here and there, at intervals months apart, and then sank again to flow on under her own fields. Nevertheless, the underground stream was there, and it was because she had so much personality to put into her enterprises and succeeded in putting it into them so completely, that her affairs prospered better than those of her neighbors.
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Cather presents the story of the Nebraska prairie. Alexandra Bergson, daughter of Swedish immigrant farmers, is devoted to the land and suffers the hardships of prairie life.

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