Louisa May Alcott by Susan CheeverLouisa May Alcott never intended to write Little Women. She had dismissed her publishers pleas for such a novel. Written out of necessity to support her family, the book had an astounding success that changed her life, a life which turned out very differently from that of her beloved heroine Jo March. In Louisa May Alcott, Susan Cheever, the acclaimed author of American Bloomsbury, returns to Concord, Massachusetts, to explore the life of one of its most iconic residents. Based on extensive research, journals, and correspondence, Cheevers biography chronicles all aspects of Alcotts life, from the fateful meeting of her parents to her death, just two days after that of her father. She details Bronson Alcotts stalwart educational vision, which led the Alcotts to relocate each time his progressive teaching went sour; her unsuccessful early attempts at serious literature, including Moods, which Henry James panned; her time as a Civil War nurse, when she contracted pneumonia and was treated with mercury-laden calomel, which would affect her health for the rest of her life; and her vibrant intellectual circle of writers and reformers, idealists who led the charge in support of antislavery, temperance, and womens rights.
Alcotts independence defied the conventional wisdom, and her personal choices and literary legacy continue to inspire generations of women. A fan of Little Women from the age of twelve, and a distinguished author in her own right, Cheever brings a unique perspective to Louisa May Alcotts life as a woman, a daughter, and a working writer.
10 Little Facts About Louisa May Alcott
Alcott's family suffered from financial difficulties, and while she worked to help support the family from an early age, she also sought an outlet in writing. She began to receive critical success for her writing in the s. Early in her career, she sometimes used the pen name A. Barnard , under which she wrote novels for young adults that focused on spies and revenge. The novel was well-received at the time and is still a popular children's novel today.
Louisa May Alcott was a 19th-century American literary icon. Birth and youth. When Louisa was young, her family moved to Boston, Massachusetts. In , the family moved to Concord, Massachusetts where Louisa and her sisters acted in plays she had written. In , the Alcott family became part of an experimental communal village known as the Fruitlands. The project failed, so the Alcott family returned to Concord in In , Amos moved his family back to Boston; he was unable to provide a steady income for his family.
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Louisa May Alcott Facts
Little Women , her most famous book, was a novel for girls. Instead, it offered a fully realized young heroine in the spirited character of tomboy Jo March. Alcott is also remembered for her book Hospital Sketches , which she penned in based on letters she had written home while serving as a nurse in Washington, D. The school he taught at in Germantown was the third school he had started, this time with aid from a wealthy benefactor who paid the tuition of many of the students. When the benefactor died, the school closed and the Alcotts moved to Philadelphia briefly, where Bronson ran an unsuccessful day school before returning to Boston in when Louisa was two years old. Louisa no doubt was thinking of her father when she said many years later, "My definition of a philosopher is of a man up in a balloon, with his family and friends holding the ropes which confine him to earth and trying to haul him down.
Louisa May Alcott , born Nov. Louisa May Alcott is most famous for her novel Little Women —69 , an autobiographical text about a cheery family of modest means. She also submitted work regularly to The Atlantic Monthly and published several short stories and other novels for youth, but none were as successful as Little Women. His idealistic approach to life focused on spiritual growth and radical self-denial, which left his family in constant poverty. Louisa May Alcott died of a stroke in Her health had been flagging for decades prior, however, and she wrote in her journal that she frequently suffered from exhaustion, headaches, nerve issues, and digestive pain. Some modern researchers have found her ailments later in life symptomatic of lupus.