The Fall into Eden: Landscape and Imagination in California

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Overview

In this book, David Wyatt examines the mythology of California as it is reflected in the literature of the region. He argues that the encounter with landscape played an important role in literature of the West, and distinguishes this particular characteristic from the literatures of other American regions. Wyatt discusses in depth the writings of Dana, Leonard, Fremont, Muir, King, Austin, Norris, Steinbeck, and Chandler, Jeffers and Snyder and their literary reactions to the landscape. By examining the changing role of the landscape in literature of California, the book sheds new light on an important theme in the American creative popular consciousness.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is an elegant, graceful and moving book, a kind of hymn to California..." American Literature

"An important contribution to the study of non-canonical American literature." The Modern Language Review

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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of illustrations; Acknowledgments; Prologue: the mythology of the region; 1. Spectatorship and abandonment: Dana, Leonard, and Frémont; 2. Muir and the possession of landscape; 3. King and catastrophe; 4. Mary Austin: nature and nurturance; 5. Norris and the vertical; 6. Steinbeck's lost gardens; 7. Chandler, marriage, and 'the Great Wrong Place'; 8. Jeffers, Snyder, and the ended world; Epilogue: fictions of space; Notes; Bibliography; Index.

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