Riders of the Purple Sage Social Concerns

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Riders of the Purple Sage is a romance, and like all romances it is severalsteps removed from reality. Zane Grey wrote about a time and place that never existed quite as he described it.

Although he described the Western landscape as he had actually seen it and defended his characters as being drawn from reality, he was, at the same time, aware that he was writing romance and providing escape from the realists. In the foreword of To the Last Man (1922) he wrote that he was providing ideals for "this materialistic age, this hard, practical, swift, greedy age of realism." These characteristics of the time were especially obvious to him after World War I, which confirmed him in his opinion that the world, especially America, was in a state of degeneration. The West of Grey's imagination was the ideal, and he wanted to provide an ideal at a...

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This section contains 589 words
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Buy the Riders of the Purple Sage Study Guide
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