Ernest Gaines Biography | Author of The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman

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Amid the worst times of the Great Depression, Ernest James Gaines was born on a plantation in Oscar, Louisiana, in 1933. At the age of nine, he joined his parents in the field and dug potatoes for fifty cents a day. During this time on the plantation he was heavily influenced by his aunt, Augustine Jefferson. She had no legs but was still able to care for him and other members of the family. It was this aunt who took care of laundry and cooking for the family, even though she had to crawl to perform her chores. She became the model for many of the women in Gaines's novels, such as the title character of The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, whose faith and self-sacrifice would enable the next generation to have a better life.

At the age of fifteen, Gaines was taken by his mother and stepfather...

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This section contains 556 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman Study Guide
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The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.