Modern Responses to Austin’s Fiction

Month: April 2016

Modern Responses to Austin’s Fiction

Several weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting with a lovely group of people at the Doraville Public Library’s American Short Stories discussion group. They read Austin’s short story, “William Bradford’s Love Life,” which Austin had first published in 1869, and which I’ve previously written about here. I really wasn’t sure what to expect from our discussion, but I was so excited to hear their responses! Reviews were mixed, and I don’t think anyone really loved the story. Nobody was happy with the female characters. It’s hard to feel sympathy for Dorothy, mooning about and putting up with her husband whispering

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“William Bradford’s Love Life”

One of Austin’s more infamous short stories is “William Bradford’s Love Life,” first published in Harper’s in 1869 and later reprinted in her David Alden’s Daughter, a collection of her earlier Pilgrim stories, in 1892. You can read the original copy in Harper’s archives here: http://harpers.org/archive/1869/06/william-bradfords-love-life/ I say infamous because of the repercussions of the story, because she received a fair amount of criticism and was later vilified by historians seeking to correct the “facts.” It’s one of Austin’s first attempts at historical fiction, but it also becomes one of the most problematic, and it may very well be one of

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