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Sister Carrie

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Sister Carrie Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"American writing, before and after Dreiser's time, differed almost as much as biology before and after Darwin," said H. L. Mencken. Sister Carrie, Dreiser's great first novel, transformed the conventional "fallen woman" story into a bold and truly innovative piece of fiction when it appeared in 1900. Naïve young Caroline Meeber, a small-town girl seduced by the lure of the modern city, becomes the mistress of a traveling salesman and then of a saloon manager, who elopes with her to New York. Both its subject matter and Dreiser's unsparing, nonjudgmental approach made Sister Carrie a controversial book in its time, and the work retains the power to shock readers today.

   "Sister Carrie came to housebound and airless America like a great

free Western wind, and to our

stuffy domesticity gave us the first

fresh air since Mark Twain and Whitman," noted Sinclair Lewis. "Dreiser enlarged, willy-nilly, by

a kind of historical accident if

The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foundation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with afford-

able hardbound editions of impor-

tant works of literature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-

fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring

as its emblem the running torch-

bearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inau-

gurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.

From the Hardcover edition.

Synopsis:

Young Caroline Meeber leaves home for the first time and experiences work, love, and the pleasures and responsibilities of independence in late nineteenth-century Chicago and New York, where she becomes the mistress of a married man in return for material wealth. Reissue.

Synopsis:

“When a girl leaves home at eighteen, she does one of two things. Either she falls into saving hands and becomes better, or she rapidly assumes the cosmopolitan standard of virtue and becomes worse.” With Sister Carrie, first published in 1900, Theodore Dreiser transformed the conventional “fallen woman” story into a genuinely innovative and powerful work of fiction. As he hurled his impressionable midwestern heroine into the throbbing, amoral world of the big city, he revealed, with brilliant insight, the deep and driving forces of American culture: the restless idealism, glamorous materialism, and basic spiritual innocence.

Sister Carrie brought American literature into the twentieth century. This volume, which reprints the text Dreiser approved for publication during his lifetime and includes a special appendix discussing his earlier, unedited manuscript, is the original standard edition of one of the great masterpieces of literary realism.

About the Author

Theodre Dreiser was born into a large and impoverished German American family in Terre Haute, Indiana, in 1871. He began his writing career as a reporter, working for newspapers in Chicago. Pittsburg, and St. Louis, until an editor friend, Arthur Henry, suggested he write a novel. The result was Sister Carrie, based on the life of Dreiser’s own sister Emma, who had run off to New York with a married man. Rejected by several publishers as “immoral”, the book was finally accepted by Doubleday and Company, and published–over Frank Doubleday’s strong objections–in 1900.

Numerous cuts and changes had been made in the lengthy original manuscript by various hands, including those of Arthur Henry, Dreiser himself. Later, when given to mythologizing his career, Dreiser was to suggest that the publishing history of Sister Carrie had been one of bowdlerization and suppression only; but the publication of his unedited manuscript by the University of Pennsylvania Press in 1981 shows that Dreiser approved and even welcomed Henry’s and Jug’s alterations. (Whether the book was ultimately improved or compromised by their liberal editing is a fascinating and as yet unresolved issue among Dreiser scholars.) Sister Carrie sold poorly, but writers like Frank Norris and William Dean Howells saw it as a breakthrough in American realism, and Dreiser’s career as a novelist was launched.

The Financer (1912) and The Titan (1914) began his trilogy about the rise of a tycoon, but it was An American Tragedy (1925), based on newspaper accounts of a sensational murder case, which brought him fame. The novel was dramatized on Broadway and sold to Hollywood. Newly influential and affluent, Dreiser visited Russia and was unimpressed, describing his observations in the skeptical Dreiser Looks at Russia (1928). In later years, however, he became an ardent (through unorthodox) Communist, writing political Treatises such as America Is Worth Saving (1941) His artistic powers on the wane, Dreiser moved to Hollywood in 1939 and supported himself largely by the sale of film rights of his earlier works. He dies there, in 1945, at the age of seventy-four.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780553904307
Publisher:
Bantam Books
Subject:
Fiction : Classics
Author:
Theodore Dreiser
Author:
E. L. Doctorow
Author:
Doctorow, E. L.
Author:
Dreiser, Theodore
Subject:
American
Subject:
Novels and novellas
Subject:
British and irish fiction (fictional works by
Subject:
General
Subject:
Classics
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Literature
Subject:
Young women
Subject:
Mistresses
Subject:
New york (n.y.)
Subject:
Audio Books-Literature
Subject:
Literary Criticism : General
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Literature-Gift Editions
Subject:
Literature-Sale Books
Subject:
Pulp Fiction-General
Subject:
World History-General
Subject:
main_subject
Subject:
all_subjects
Publication Date:
19820101
Binding:
ELECTRONIC
Language:
English
Pages:
409

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Romance » General

Sister Carrie
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Product details 409 pages Random House Publishing Group - English 9780553904307 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Young Caroline Meeber leaves home for the first time and experiences work, love, and the pleasures and responsibilities of independence in late nineteenth-century Chicago and New York, where she becomes the mistress of a married man in return for material wealth. Reissue.
"Synopsis" by , “When a girl leaves home at eighteen, she does one of two things. Either she falls into saving hands and becomes better, or she rapidly assumes the cosmopolitan standard of virtue and becomes worse.” With Sister Carrie, first published in 1900, Theodore Dreiser transformed the conventional “fallen woman” story into a genuinely innovative and powerful work of fiction. As he hurled his impressionable midwestern heroine into the throbbing, amoral world of the big city, he revealed, with brilliant insight, the deep and driving forces of American culture: the restless idealism, glamorous materialism, and basic spiritual innocence.

Sister Carrie brought American literature into the twentieth century. This volume, which reprints the text Dreiser approved for publication during his lifetime and includes a special appendix discussing his earlier, unedited manuscript, is the original standard edition of one of the great masterpieces of literary realism.

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