The Journals of Louisa May Alcott

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Little, Brown, 1989 - Biography & Autobiography - 356 pages
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A companion volume to The Selected Letters of Louisa May Alcott, the journals are here published in their original, unabridged version for the first time. Entries which have previously been censored or altered are reinstated and corrected, providing a wealth of new material.

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Madeleine Stern is listed as "Associate Editor" of this book. She's an Alcott scholar who wrote a biography of LMA that was published in the 1950s and was reissued by Random House in 1996--and it ... Read full review

The journals of Louisa May Alcott

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The editors of this text have collected diaries, journals, and year-end "Notes and Memoranda'' and from them assembled a single continuous chronological record of Alcott's life from her first entry in ... Read full review

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About the author (1989)

Louisa May Alcott was born in Germantown, Pennsylvania, in 1832. Two years later, she moved with her family to Boston and in 1840 to Concord, which was to remain her family home for the rest of her life. Her father, Bronson Alcott, was a transcendentalist and friend of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau. Alcott early realized that her father could not be counted on as sole support of his family, and so she sacrificed much of her own pleasure to earn money by sewing, teaching, and churning out potboilers. Her reputation was established with Hospital Sketches (1863), which was an account of her work as a volunteer nurse in Washington, D.C. Alcott's first works were written for children, including her best-known Little Women (1868--69) and Little Men: Life at Plumfield with Jo's Boys (1871). Moods (1864), a "passionate conflict," was written for adults. Alcott's writing eventually became the family's main source of income. Throughout her life, Alcott continued to produce highly popular and idealistic literature for children. An Old-Fashioned Girl (1870), Eight Cousins (1875), Rose in Bloom (1876), Under the Lilacs (1878), and Jack and Jill (1881) enjoyed wide popularity. At the same time, her adult fiction, such as the autobiographical novel Work: A Story of Experience (1873) and A Modern Mephistopheles (1877), a story based on the Faust legend, shows her deeper concern with such social issues as education, prison reform, and women's suffrage. She realistically depicts the problems of adolescents and working women, the difficulties of relationships between men and women, and the values of the single woman's life.

Joel Myerson (born 1945) is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English Language and Literature at the University of South Carolina. He has edited many books about the works of such American literary figures as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Louisa May Alcott, Emily Dickinson, and Walt Whitman.

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