Virginian A Horseman of the Plains

ISBN-10: 0199554102
ISBN-13: 9780199554102
Edition: 2009
List price: $11.95 Buy it from $3.94
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Description: The Virginian (1902) is Owen Wister's classic popular romance, and the most significant shaping influence on cowboy fiction. Its narrator, fresh from the East, encounters in Wyoming cattle country a strange, seductive and often violent land where  More...

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Book details

List price: $11.95
Copyright year: 2009
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 6/15/2009
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 400
Size: 5.00" wide x 7.50" long x 0.25" tall
Weight: 0.594
Language: English

The Virginian (1902) is Owen Wister's classic popular romance, and the most significant shaping influence on cowboy fiction. Its narrator, fresh from the East, encounters in Wyoming cattle country a strange, seductive and often violent land where the handsome figure of the Virginian battles for supremacy with Trampas and other ne'er-do-wells. His courtship of the genteel Vermont schoolteacher, Molly Wood, is a humourously observed battle of the sexes, demonstrating thatthe 'customs of the country' must eventually prevail. Rich in vernacular wit and portraying a romanticized escape from the decorum of the patrician East, The Virginian exudes a sense of redemptive possibility, drawing on Wister's experience of a summer spent on a Wyoming ranch in 1895. This edition includes Wister's neglected essay, `The Evolution of the Cow-Puncher' (1895), a revealing companion to a novel that has disturbing undercurrents.

A Philadelphian and grandson of the actress Fanny Kemble, Owen Wister was educated in private schools in the United States and abroad and graduated from Harvard University with highest honors in music. After suffering a nervous breakdown, he traveled to Wyoming to recover his health. He then made frequent trips back to the West. His only well-known novel, The Virginian (1902), a bestseller for years, is a pioneer western about a man Wister considered to be the "last heroic figure" of America. It was dedicated to his lifelong friend Theodore Roosevelt, another outdoorsman and lover of the West, whom he had met when they were both students at Harvard. Although often ignored as serious literature, Wister's novel with its archetypal hero has widely influenced popular western novels and films. Two of Wister's reprinted books are Lin McLean (1898) and Lady Baltimore (1906).

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