Student Queries 2004


2007 2006





Student Queries

2007 2006






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Study Guide Information

QUESTION: Can anyone provide a brief review or where I can find good study guide information regarding Howells "American and Old World Nevelists" work? 




Howells and politics

QUESTION: I'm doing a report on William Dean Howell and have spent several hours looking for what he risked his reputation in campaigning against what political incidents?

I'm also trying to find two of his writings illustrating the role he played in condemning the existence of economic and social systems and the measures he took to carry out this role.   Kyle


You might want to look at his activities during the Haymarket affair in 1886.
Howells Quotation from A Boy's Town

QUESTION: I need the correct rendering of a statement or quote from Boys Town.  Cannot seem to find my copy of this recently acquired book, but the quote seems to be apopros for raising two teenage sons:

"There is a time appointed between childhood and adulthood, the product of which is boyhood."

thanks,  glenn klein


Mildred Howells's "The Different Seed"

I am sure this is quite simple to answer but can anyone provide me with the rest of the poem by Mildred Howells 'The Different Seed'. As it is usually quoted on the Internet and elsewhere it seems to be incomplete. Were her poems published anywhere? Roy Smith 7/3/04

In the Rise of Silas Lapham
1.  Discuss the contrast between old money and new money

2. Describe the multiple ways Silas Lapham rises and falls in the novel.

3. Dsicuss the difference between the ways in which Bromfield Corey and Silas Lapham view money, work and leisure. Madge Barnett 6/4/04

Howells Quotations
QUESTION: I am a doctoral candidate working in Australia and in the final phase of the writing of my dissertation. My interest is not primarily in Howells himself at this stage.

I am trying to identify a quotation attributed to William Dean Howells, evidently in a letter he wrote to a young American poet who was living in Paris and writing symbolist poetry in the French language. Howells is said to have written thus:

'A man is not born in his native country for nothing. I wish I might persuade you!'

And he added:

'I want you to be an American and to write in English. If you must write first in French reinstate yourself afterwards'.

I am keen to identify the source of this quotation. To whom was it written and what was the date of the letter?

I should be most grateful for any assistance with this.

With thanks

John Thompson


Reception of The Rise of Silas Lapham

QUESTION: I was just wondering if anyone could answer some questions on the book The Rise of Silas Lapham.  I was wondering what the critical response at the time of publication and recently of the novel was and is.  Also, I was wonderign what Problems/Controversial issues it was addressing.  If you know a site or could help me out that would be great.  Thanks. Dan

Here are some links:

A link to one review from the October 1885 Atlantic.
A link to a review in Catholic World

A link to a review in the Overland Monthly

You can also find some of these in the Norton Critical Edition of the novel and in books on Howells.

Howells and Theodor Fontane

QUESTION: I am looking for any connections between Howells and/or the themes of his works and the German author Theodor Fontane. Any information would be welcome but I am particularly interested at present with their treatment of relationships within marriage.Richard Ellington 2-1-04





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