The Gathering of Zion: The Story of the Mormon Trail / Edition 2

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Overview


Pulitzer Prize-winning author Wallace Stegner tells about a thousand-mile migration marked by hardship and sudden death—but unique in American history for its purpose, discipline, and solidarity. Other Bison Books by Wallace Stegner include Mormon Country, Recapitulation, Second Growth, and Women on the Wall.
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Editorial Reviews

Book Week

"When The Gathering of Zion was first published in 1964, Ray A. Billington wrote, "Wallace Stegner has written the best single volume to appear on the Mormon migration westward. . . . His sensitivity to human beings and his ability to understand the spirit motivating the oft-persecuted Latter Day Saints allow him insights missed by earlier writers. . . . [Stegner draws on] scores of printed and unprinted diaries kept by the Saints, and has used these very personal documents to pinpoint events that take on new meaning when viewed through the eyes of commonplace mortals."—Book Week
Saturday Review

"Even those who have a minimal interest in trails, covered wagons, and the West will find The Gathering of Zion abundantly worth their while; and the Mormons too might profit by meditating upon Mr. Stegner's thoughtful comments on their faith, their society, and their history."—Saturday Review
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803292130
  • Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/1992
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 348
  • Sales rank: 642,939
  • Product dimensions: 5.49 (w) x 8.01 (h) x 0.77 (d)

Meet the Author

Wallace Stegner
Taking the American frontier – both physical and psychological – as his subject, Wallace Stegner created a body of work that stretches from prizewinning novels and short stories to historical and political nonfiction. Taking both human experience and natural beauty as his muses, Stegner embodied what he called the “western character.”

Biography

Wallace Stegner was born in 1909 in Lake Mills, Iowa. The son of Scandinavian immigrants, he traveled with his parents and brother all over the West-to North Dakota, Washington, Saskatchewan, Montana, and Wyoming-before settling in Salt Lake City in 1921. Many of the landscapes he encountered in his peripatetic youth figure largely in his work, as do characters based on his stern father and athletic, outgoing brother. Stegner received most of his education in Utah, graduating from the University in 1930. He furthered his education at the University of Iowa, where he received a master's and a doctoral degree. He married Mary Stuart Page in 1934, and for the next decade the couple followed Wallace's teaching career-to the University of Wisconsin, Harvard, and eventually to Stanford University, where he founded the creative writing program, and where he was to remain until his retirement in 1971. A number of his creative writing students have become some of today's most well respected writers, including Wendell Berry, Thomas McGuane, Raymond Carver, Edward Abbey, Robert Stone, and Larry McMurty.

Throughout his career and after, Stegner's literary output was tremendous. His first novel, Remembering Laughter, was published in 1937. By the time of his death in 1993 he had published some two dozen works of fiction, history, biography, and essays. Among his many literary prizes are the Pulitzer Prize for Angle of Repose (1971) and the National Book Award for The Spectator Bird (1976). His collection of essays, Where the Bluebird Sings to the Lemonade Springs (1992), was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle award.

Although his fiction deals with many universal themes, Stegner is primarily recognized as a writer of the American West. Much of his literature deals with debunking myths of the West as a romantic country of heroes on horseback, and his passion for the terrain and its inhabitants have earned him the title "The Dean of Western Letters." He was one of the few true Men of Letters in this generation. An historian, essayist, short story writer and novelist, as well as a leading environmental writer. Although always connected in people's minds with the West, he had a long association with New England. Many short stories and one of his most successful novels, Crossing to Safety, are set in Vermont, where he had a summer home for many years. Another novel, The Spectator Bird, takes place in Denmark.

An early environmentalist, he actively championed the region's preservation and was instrumental-with his now-famous 'Wilderness Letter'-in the passage of the 1964 Wilderness Act. Honest and straightforward, educated yet unpretentious, cantankerous yet compassionate, Wallace Stegner was an enormous presence in the American literary landscape, a man who wrote and lived with ferocity, energy, and integrity.

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Group (USA).

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    1. Also Known As:
      Wallace Earle Stegner (full name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      February 18, 1909
    2. Place of Birth:
      Lake Mills, Iowa
    1. Date of Death:
      April 13, 1993
    2. Place of Death:
      Santa Fe, New Mexico

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2006

    A tribute to faith and sacrifice

    This book is a wonderful tribute to the noble pioneers who made monumental sacrifices to reach 'Zion' in the American West. Wallace Stegner is a non-Mormon who tells the story of the Mormon pioneers with deep respect for their beliefs, sympathy for the hardships they endured, and an appreciation of their impressive accomplishments in settling and colonizing a desert wilderness. This is a fantastic work for anyone who wants to understand the Mormon contribution to the settling of the American West.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2009

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