Giants in the Earth Themes

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Critics have praised Rolvaag' s synthesis of the themes of immigration and the westward migration in Giants in the Earth. Per Hansa is the perfect embodiment of the immigrant spirit. "Good God!" he pants at the opening of the novel, "This kingdom is going to be mine!" Per sees economic opportunity everywhere, and he fantasizes endlessly about a fancy house and a bounty of farm animals. But the price the immigrant pays is high in terms of lost supports, prejudice, the need to remake social networks and to reformulate cultural values, and intergenerational conflicts. Beret is the supreme example of the immigrant's dilemma. As Per tells the minister, "She has never felt at home here in America There are some people, I know now who never should emigrate, because, you see, they can't take pleasure in that which is to come."

The paucity of...

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This section contains 1,221 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Giants in the Earth Study Guide
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Novels for Students
Giants in the Earth from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.