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The Optimist's Daughter Summary
Eudora Welty

Everything you need to understand or teach The Optimist's Daughter by Eudora Welty.

  • The Optimist's Daughter Summary & Study Guide
  • 30 The Optimist's Daughter Lessons
  • 20 Activities
  • 180 Multiple Choice Questions
  • 60 Short Essay Questions
  • 20 Essay Questions
  • Pre-Made Tests and Quizzes
  • ...and more

The Optimist's Daughter Summary

Introduction

The first version of Eudora Welty's best-selling, Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, The Optimist's Daughter, appeared as a short story in 1969 in the New Yorker. Revised and published as a novel in 1972, it is considered by some to be her sparest novel. In fact, Welty herself thought of the novel as more akin to a short story than a true novel. The book's complexity arises not from its length but from the emotions of the characters.

The Optimist's Daughter is the story of Laurel, a widow who returns to Mississippi when her father is ill and witnesses his death and funeral. From there, she embarks on a deeply personal journey to explore her past and her family in order to make sense of her future.

Welty's novel contains a number of autobiographical elements. Some of the male characters are inspired by Welty's uncles, and the women of the town represent Welty's...

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Study Pack

The The Optimist's Daughter Study Pack contains about 77 pages of study material in 7 products, including:

The Optimist's Daughter Study Guide

Lesson Plan

All teaching products sold separately.

The Optimist's Daughter Lesson Plans contain 117 pages of teaching material, including:

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