Главная > Реферат >Остальные работы
About Louise Erdrich Essay, Research Paper
The earth was full of life and there were dandelions growing out
the window, thick as thieves, already seeded, fat as big yellow plungers. She let my hand
go. I got up. "I’ll go out and dig a few dandelions," I told her. Outside, the
sun was hot and heavy as a hand on my back. I felt it flow down my arms, out my fingers,
arrowing through the ends of the fork into the earth. With every root I prized up there
was a return, as if I was kin to its secret lesson. The touch got stronger as I worked
through the grassy afternoon. Uncurling from me like a seed out of the blackness where I
was lost, the touch spread. The spiked leaves full of bitter mother’s milk. A buried root.
A nuisance people dig up and throw in the sun to wither. A globe of frail seeds
From Love Medicine (1984)
Erdrich’s interest in writing can be traced to her childhood and her heritage. She told
Writer’s Digest contributor Michael Schumacher, "People in [Native American]
families make everything into a story . . . People just sit and the stories start coming,
one after another. I suppose that when you grow up constantly hearing the stories rise,
break, and fall, it gets into you somehow."
[. . . .]
Erdrich once told Contemporary Authors of the way in which her parents
encouraged her writing: "My father used to give me a nickel for story I wrote, and my
mother wove strips of construction paper together and stapled them into book covers. So at
an early age I felt myself to be a published author earning substantial royalties."
Online source: http://www.nativeauthors.com/search/bio/bioerdrich.html
Although first published as a poet, Louise Erdrich considers herself a storyteller:
"I began to tell stories in the poems and then realized that there was not enough
room . . . But I think in the book you try to make the language do some of the same
things, metaphysically and sensuously, physically, that poetry can do (Winged Words, 1990).
Erdrich’s fiction has been critically acclaimed for its lyrical prose anf humor,
beginning with Love Medicine (1984), which won the National Book Critics Circle
Award. Chickasaw writer Linda Hogan credits Erdrich with pointing Native-American writing
in a new direction by "telling the plain stories of people and their lives without
pity, judgment, opinion or romanticization" (This Is About Vision, ed. William
Balassi, et al., 1990).
Erdrich was raised in North Dakota, where her parents worked for the Wahpeton Indian
School. Her morhter encouraged her to enter the first coeducational class at Dartmouth
College in 1972 through the Native American Studies program, where she met her future
husband and collaborator, Michael Dorris the program’s director. After graduation,
she returned to North Dakota and held a variety of jobs, including Poet in the Schools. In
1979, she earned a master’s degree in creative writing at Johns Hopkins University,
and became a writer in residence at Dartmouth, marrying Dorris in 1981.
In 1982, Erdrich won the Nelson Algren fiction competition with the story "The
World’s Greatest Fisherman," which became the first chapter of Love Medicine, the
first novel in a tetralogy that includes The Beet Queen (1986), Tracks (1988),
and Bingo Palace (1994). Each of the novels interweaves self-contained short
stories told by different narrators and chronicles three generations of Native-American
and European-immigrant families in a fictionalized region of North Dakota from 1912 to the
present. Cyclical in structure, the novels move toward resolution through discovery of
individual identity in relation to "people in a small community who have to get along
with each other over time and who know all of each other’s stories" ("An
Interview with Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris," Missouri Review 11, 1988).
Erdrich’s first book of poetry, Jacklight, was published in 1984, and was
followed by a second collection, Baptism of Fire, in 1989. Although Erdrich and
Dorris always write collaboratively, The Crown of Columbus (1991) was the first
work to be published under both their names. Erdich’s work has appeared in such
periodicals as Ms., the New Yorker, and Harper’s, among
others, as well as in numerous anthologies, including That’s What She Said (1984)
and Spider Woman’s Granddaughters (1989). She and Dorris live in New Hampshire with
their five children.
See–Jan George, "Interview with Louise Erdrich," North Dakota Quarterly 53
(1985): 240-246. Hertha D. Wong, "An Interview with Louise Erdrich and Michael
Dorris," North Dakota Quarterly (1987): 196-218. Kay Bonetti, "An
Interview with Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris," Missouri Review 11 (1988):
79-99. Louise Erdrich, "Conversions," in Day In, Day Out: Women’s Lives in
North Dakota, ed. Elizabeth Hampsten (1989), pp. 23-27. Laura Coltelli, ed., Winged
Words: American Indian Writers Speak (1990).
[Editor’s Note: Michael Dorris committed suicide in 1997.]
From The Oxford Companion to Women’s Writing in the United States. Ed.
Cathy Davidson and Linda Wagner-Martin. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995. Copyright
? 1995 by Oxford University Press.
Amy Leigh McNally and Piyali Nath Dalal
In a 1985 interview with Laura Coltelli, Karen Louise Erdrich was asked if she
considered herself to be a poet or a storyteller. Erdrich replied, "Oh, a
storyteller, a writer." Her own life story, as well as her novels and poems, are what
make Louise Erdrich so widely known. Erdrich, the oldest of seven children, was born in
Little Falls, Minnesota, on June 7, 1954. The daughter of French Ojibwe mother and German
American father, Louise Erdrich is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa.
Erdrich’s large extended family lived nearby, affecting her writing life from an early
Her father introduced Louise to William Shakespeare’s plays and encouraged Louise and
her sisters to write their own stories (Giles 44). Erdrich comments in a 1991 Writer’s
Digest interview, "The people in our families made everything into a story. They
love to tell a good story. People just sit and the stories start coming, one after
another. You just sort of grab the tail of the last person’s story: it reminds you of
something and you keep going on. I suppose that when you grow up constantly hearing the
stories rise, break and fall, it gets into you somehow" (Giles 43). The exposure to
storytelling had a prodigious influence on Louise’s shaping and creation of plot; it was
as important as literary influences if not more.
[. . . .]
After completing her undergraduate degree, Erdrich taught poetry and writing to young
people through a position at the State Arts Council of North Dakota. She worked a variety
of low-paying jobs, from waitressing to weighing trucks on the interstate. These
occupations have made their way into Erdrich’s fiction, increasing its verisimilitude, and
broadening her understanding of the human experience. Erdrich was awarded a fellowship to
be part of John Hopkins University’s writing program in 1979. She then worked as an editor
of the Boston Indian Council newspaper, The Circle.
[. . . .]
Writing intuitively, allowing characters to tell their own stories with their own voice
and at their own pace, writing without chronological structure, writing prose daily, and
working on several projects at once are some pieces of the process of Louise Erdrich’s
writing life. She revises extensively, referring incessantly to old journals for ideas and
[. . . .]
Although two books of Erdrich’s poetry, Imagination (1981) and Jacklight
(1984), had already been published by the time Love Medicine (1984) appeared
in publication, Erdrich’s first novel was clearly responsible for her eruption into
academic and popular success as a writer. Love Medicine, a collection of
interrelated short stories, features characters and speakers from four Anishinaabe
families: the Kashpaws, the Lamartines, the Pillagers, and the Morrisseys. Erdrich
represents the families in non-hierarchical terms by employing speakers of various ages
and stations within the community. Furthermore, the fifty year span of the novel is
related to the reader not chronologically, but instead in a cyclical manner as the book
opens in 1980, weaves its way back to the 1930’s, and finally returns to the early 1980’s.
Erdrich’s narrative technique ultimately accomplishes a holistic temporal view of the
Anishinaabe culture in which present occurrences cannot be isolated from the past.
From Voices in the Gap. Online source: http://voices.cla.umn.edu/authors/LouiseErdrich.html
"My father used to give me a nickel for every story I wrote…. So at an early age
I felt myself to be a published author earning substantial royalties."
Award-winning author Louise Erdrich published her first two books — Jacklight,
a volume of poetry, and Love Medicine, a novel — at the age of thirty. The
daughter of a Chippewa Indian mother and a German-American father, the author explores
Native American themes in her works, with major characters representing both sides of her
heritage. The first in a multi-part series, Love Medicine traces two Native
American families from 1934 to 1984 in a unique seven-narrator format. The novel was
extremely well-received, earning its author numerous awards, including the National Book
Critics Circle Award in 1984. Since then, Erdrich has gone on to publish The Beet
Queen, Tracks, The Bingo Palace, and Tales of Burning Love, all
of which are related through recurring characters and themes.
Erdrich’s interest in writing can be traced to her childhood and her heritage. She toldWriter’s
Digest contributor Michael Schumacher, "People in [Native American] families make
everything into a story…. People just sit and the stories start coming, one after
another. I suppose that when you grow up constantly hearing the stories rise, break, and
fall, it gets into you somehow." The oldest in a family of seven children, Erdrich
was raised in Wahpeton, North Dakota. Her Chippewa grandfather had been the tribal chair
of the nearby Turtle Mountain Reservation, and her parents worked at the Bureau of Indian
Falls boarding school. Erdrich once told CA of the way in which her parents
encouraged her writing: "My father used to give me a nickel for every story I wrote,
and my mother wove strips of construction paper together and stapled them into book
covers. So at an early age I felt myself to be a published author earning substantial
Erdrich’s first year at Dartmouth, 1972, was the year the college began admitting
women, as well as the year the Native American studies department was established. The
author’s future husband and collaborator, anthropologist Michael Dorris, was hired to
chair the department. In his class, Erdrich began the exploration of her own ancestry that
would eventually inspire her novels. Intent on balancing her academic training with a
broad range of practical knowledge, Erdrich told Miriam Berkley in an interview with Publishers
Weekly, "I ended up taking some really crazy jobs, and I’m glad I did. They
turned out to have been very useful experiences, although I never would have believed it
at the time." In addition to working as a lifeguard, waitress, poetry teacher at
prisons, and construction flag signaler, Erdrich became an editor for the Circle, a
Boston Indian Council newspaper. She told Schumacher, "Settling into that job and
becoming comfortable with an urban community — which is very different from the
reservation community — gave me another reference point. There were lots of people
with mixed blood, lots of people who had their own confusions. I realized that this was
part of my life — it wasn’t something that I was making up — and that it was
something I wanted to write about." In 1978, the author enrolled in an M.A.
program at Johns Hopkins University, where she wrote poems and stories incorporating her
heritage, many of which would later become part of her books. She also began sending her
work to publishers, most of whom sent back rejection slips.
After receiving her master’s degree, Erdrich returned to Dartmouth as a
writer-in-residence. Dorris — with whom she had remained in touch — attended a
reading of Erdrich’s poetry there, and was impressed. A writer himself — Dorris would
later publish the best-selling novel A Yellow Raft in Blue Water and receive the
1989 National Book Critics Circle Award for his nonfiction work The Broken Cord
— he decided then that he was interested in working with Erdrich and getting to know
her better. When he left for New Zealand to do field research and Erdrich went to Boston
to work on a textbook, the two began sending their poetry and fiction back and forth with
their letters, laying a groundwork for a literary relationship. Dorris returned to New
Hampshire in 1980, and Erdrich moved back there as well. The two began collaborating on
short stories, including one titled "The World’s Greatest Fisherman." When this
story won five thousand dollars in the Nelson Algren fiction competition, Erdrich and
Dorris decided to expand it into a novel — Love Medicine. At the same time,
their literary relationship led to a romantic one. In 1981 they were married.
The titles Erdrich and Dorris have chosen for their novels — such as Love
Medicine and A Yellow Raft in Blue Water — tend to be rich poetic or
visual images. The title is often the initial inspiration from which their novels are
drawn. Erdrich told Schumacher, "I think a title is like a magnet: It begins to draw
these scraps of experience or conversation or memory to it. Eventually, it collects a
book." Erdrich and Dorris’s collaboration process begins with a first draft, usually
written by whoever had the original idea for the book, the one who will ultimately be
considered the official author. After the draft is written, the other person edits it, and
- ... Erdrich Essay, Research Paper Louise Erdrich, the author of the famous poem titled Captivity, tells a story about ... from the rock,? (Erdrich 27). Louise Erdrich uses her native history ... statement. Without a doubt, Louise Erdrich creates life and history through ...
- Loneliness 2 Essay, Research Paper Loneliness Loneliness is inherent in ... about Henry around this time. We had always been together before” (Erdrich ... York: Scribner’s, 1998. Louise, Heidi, and North, Milou. “Erdrich, Louise.” Contemporary Authors: New ...
- ... Love Essay, Research Paper The book Tales of Burning Love that Louise Erdrich has ... why they loved him. Each main character is very ... thing that I didn’t like about the book was how this ... I’d recommend it to them! Erdrich, Louise. Tales of Burning Love. New ...
- The Red Convertible Essay, Research Paper In the Red Convertible by Louise Erdrich, the main character ... ?s appearance, psyche, and his feelings about the Red Convertible. Before the ... ?s appearance, mental state, and feelings about his once cherished car change ...
- German Americans Essay, Research Paper In 1990 the U.S. Census ... From 1820-1970 they estimated about 6.9 million Germans came to ... haven for religious freedom. About ten thousand Jews came to ... as Kurt Vonnegut and Louise Erdrich, and extraordinary athletes such ...