Amber 02-12-01 Willa Cather wrote several wonderful stories and novels. After reading or viewing three of them and reading a little about her other works on the Internet, I have noticed that all of them have things in common. I have observed that her works often times involve family situations and how different types of people deal with death. The stories tend to reflect a time in her life I would assume. They are also reflected close to her home in many times.
The stories tend to use the same types of dialogue and have similar characters as well. In the movie, O Pioneers! , the family is torn by death in several ways. The father dies in the beginning of the movie. He makes Alexandra the head of the family because he knows she will keep the land and that she can care for the family the best. In a way, it seemed he knew she would best respect his decisions prior to his death.
It is in this way already that death and families are introduced. In an opposing circumstance, the sculptor, Harvey, in "The Sculptor's Funeral", had no family to miss. He was basically thrown out of the family after they realized he didn't quite fit in where he was born. It didn't seem like he cared though because he still became successful in Boston.
He died and was brought back to his hometown after being an outcast there prior to his success. When he was buried in his hometown he was not talked of brightly. He was basically made an object for the town to ridicule. His only friend who was a lawyer there stood up for him at the end of the story showing all of the townspeople how cruel they were to Harvey. I read an article on the Internet about her and as she wrote "Neighbor Rosicky" her father went through a heart attack and died from it. It almost seems in the writing you can tell the change in the mood after her father's death.
This brings her personal life into her writing and makes it unique while tying in with the story well. I believe it even said that her circumstances were used in her writing for the remainder to the story. Willa Cather was raised in rural Kansas. Her writing also reflected a country-life atmosphere. Her stories rarely took place in larger cities because she didn't know much about them. It seems like it would be difficult and unenjoyable to write a novel on something you don't know anything about.
Thus her decision to place her stories in areas she knew well was wise and natural. Several of the characters in the stories have personalities that overlap. Alexandra was very much like Harvey's best friend and Rosicky in their attitude toward death. They all seem to share the opinion that it is just another obstacle in life. Although they all deal with it one way or another, they all overcome it quite well. The writings by Willa Cather were great to read and view.
Her style of writing often shares qualities from story to story with a small twist. They all show meaning of death, family, her personal life, her experiences in the southern United States, and her unique way of comparing characters between stories..