Literary Precedents for The Dollmaker

This Study Guide consists of approximately 74 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Dollmaker.
This section contains 401 words
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The Dollmaker is a unique work of art that can best be appreciated if approached on its own terms, even if it presents affinities with several important traditions in American fiction.

Besides utilizing some techniques of the naturalistic novel, The Dollmaker has some thematic elements in common with this type of fiction. Arnow, in fact, shares with such naturalistic writers as Frank Norris and Theodore Dreiser a tendency to stress the impact of external forces on individual fates, to present ample sociological observation, and to examine the more depressing aspects of existence. Similarly, because in this novel Arnow explores with admirable skill and effectiveness the literary possibilities of the material provided by her intimate knowledge of Kentucky, The Dollmaker may be related to the tradition of American regionalism. Avoiding the comic, melodramatic, sentimental, and sensational stereotypes of poor whites that frequently mar regional fiction about the...

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This section contains 401 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Dollmaker Study Guide
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