Life In James Still's River Of Earth

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The era of the 1920s and 1930s was a detrimental time in America, especially Kentucky. People were dealing with the aftermath of the Stock market crash and the Great Depression. It was a time of poverty, hunger, and violence. Author, James Still was one of the few writers to accurately capture this time in Kentucky with his novel, River of Earth. Through his vivid writing and correspondence, James Still exemplifies the political, social, and cultural aspects of Kentucky during the era of the 1920s and 1930s which is why readers were greatly affected by him.
During the time James Still wrote River of Earth (1940), he was dealing with his own personal struggles. In correspondences that Still had from the 1930s, he wrote a lot about his personal problems and finding success in his writing career. Most of his works were overlooked and underappreciated. He had many letters from publishers rejecting his works. One rejection letter he received stated, “Editors remain interested in authors only if they have a somewhat steady output and the knowledge that the author is producing and is going to produce more and more regular and better material each time”. It’s uncertain if letters like the aforementioned had a direct impact on Still, but he continued to search for career success. Although a lot of readers did not enjoy his writing, there were
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The novel is significant in providing new insights to readers and help them better understand this difficult time. Still is able to capture the struggles in Kentucky by using his own life experiences and vivid writing skills. Overall, River of Earth is probably one of the most moving depression era novels and the most accurate in the describing the political, social, and cultural aspects of Kentucky which is why readers continue to be greatly affected by this classic

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