Work: A Story of Experience Summary
Louisa May Alcott

Everything you need to understand or teach Work by Louisa May Alcott.

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Work: A Story of Experience Summary

Christie Devon is on a quest for selffulfillment through meaningful work. Her quest involves themes of feminist independence and the search for moral and communal values. Strikingly, in the novel's first sentence Christie announces to her aunt "a new Declaration of Independence." Her personal independence seems to Christie a primary goal when she is an inexperienced young adult, but even then she possesses a budding feeling of outreach to others. She says that she will be satisfied if she can earn her living "honestly and happily," and leave a beautiful example behind" that will at least "help one other woman." The spirit of community is implicit at the outset of Christie's search. A "useful, happy woman" cannot exist alone.

Christie's various work experiences teach moral lessons along with social duties. The first job, as a maid, introduces Christie to demeaning conditions and bad pay. She also learns humility and...

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Work Short Guide