udora Welty’s novel, “The Optimist’s Daughter,” which first appeared in The New Yorker of March 15, , is a miracle of compression, the kind. The Optimist’s Daughter. By Eudora Welty · March 15, P. The New Yorker, March 15, P. Laurel’s father, Judge McKelva, died in the hospital 3. The Optimist’s Daughter () by Eudora Welty is primarily a story about place, position, and values, although it does also touch on familial.

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And no one will ever call you “son” or “daughter” again. I didn’t hate or like this. Meanwhile Laurel remains in her childhood home for a weekend, visiting with friends and trying to come to terms with the deaths of several loved ones: It was first published as a long story in the New Yorker in March and was subsequently revised and published in book form in By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use.

As Eudora Welty so beautifully puts it, “Memory returned like spring February Learn how and when to remove this template message.

Fay’s family is actually comical, as is Fay herself. The judge takes a long time to recover from the operation, and Mrs Martello is installed as an experienced dauhgter nurse.

It was hard to have sympathy for the character Fay McKelva, but it was only after I had finished the book and had pondered on my feelings for a while that I realized how crazy that town was driving this little girl from Madrid, Texas. And, yeah, they dughter seem pretty happy with the way things are but that doesn’t stop me from feeling terrible on their behalf.

May 14, Madeleine rated it daighter was amazing Shelves: I would be happy to share my views. Welty was born in Jackson, Mississippi, and lived a sig Eudora Alice Welty was an award-winning American author who wrote short stories and novels about the American South. When I went back to North Carolina a few years ago on a research trip, the smells and sounds of the land and the air hit me like a shout of remembering.


The Optimist’s Daughter by Eudora Welty () | LiteraryLadiesGuide

You have to do some filling in, and because you have to involve yourself more while reading, you start to merge with Laurel, the narrator.

Welty was born in Jackson, Mississippi, and lived a significant portion of her life in the eueora Belhaven neighborhood, where her home has been preserved. I can identify with his double-jointed issues see picture below. Each day I look at all those boxes, and with few exceptions I say, “No, not today.

The Optimist’s Daughter

Let the language become more familiar as the book advances. The Optimist’s Daughter is a subtle, old-fashioned novel set in the South that explores social class, death, and values through the conflict between the middle-aged, widowed, well-bred daughter of a judge, Laurel, and her ignorant, red weelty, younger stepmother, Fay.

Wow, what a treat. The hospital seems eccentrically loud and folksy, because Welty writes the dialogue to jar and to surprise.

I understood it and the protagonist, Laurel. The Texans also add genuine family feeling to the emotions simmering in the air, because Wanda Fay is loved, and she loves them, even though they are all awful, ghastly, horrible people: At only pages, this book was still a struggle for me to get through. I imagine we could talk for hours about love and the loss of it.

As it is, there is friction enough even among those gen “Even if you have kept silent for the sake of the dead, you cannot rest in your silence, as the dead rest.

And it’s not Judge McKelva’s daughter, Laurel. And when her family from Texas shows up for the funeral, you see that she got it honestly. All of Laurel’s thoughts and feelings become that much more poignant and revelatory. Fay is a horrific character, because she is so unbridled, so uninterested in keeping things calm and quiet: Trivia About The Optimist’s Da Of course, the subject matter, death and its aftermath, is so serious and Welty addresses it head on.


The writing is sublime. I felt the heat rise in my neck and the need to say “you have no right”, but the fact of the matter is Fay does have the right. She was 64 when it won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in I really enjoyed this novel and its stylistic departures.

The sadness and loss bursting from both the spoken and un- very nearly had this novel thrumming with compounded grief that needed an outlet before the pages themselves imploded with unexpressed emotions. It is packed somewhere among the many books boxed away along with photograph albums of three generations.

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Outliving is something we do to them.

And, through the five-Guinness-deep fog I’d worked myself into, I was blindsided by the stone-cold-sober realization what does sting is how all my brother and his girlfriend have is themselves, me, and their friends. She’s 30 otpimist younger than the Judge and, except for that, it’s impossible to see the attraction.

Optmiist help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. I hated it, mainly because I felt the …more Have you read it?

The horrible stepmother in The Optimist’s Daughter, by Eudora Welty

The Optimist’s daughter, by Eudora Welty. You want to be back in that world, looking at those people and wondering why things happened the way they did.

Laurel is certainly not as attached to “things” as I am.

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