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Maggie: A Girl of the Streets

Ratings:
Length: 102 pages1 hour

Summary

Originally published pseudonymously in 1893, “Maggie: A Girl of the Streets” follows the tragic tale of Maggie and her life in the harsh streets and tenements of the New York City Bowery district. Initially rejected by publishers for being viewed as too brutal and accurate in its descriptions of poverty and female sexuality, Stephen Crane published the work at his own expense. Following the success of Crane’s novel “The Red Badge of Courage,” this novel was reissued in 1896 with extensive re-writes and edits. Generally considered to be the first work of American Naturalism, Crane combines exhaustive research and an attention to detail to create an accurate depiction of life for the working poor at the turn of the century in the slums of New York City. Maggie’s judgmental and violent family, the harsh working conditions she faces in factories, her unstable relationships with men, and her eventual destitution on the streets, are used to explore the important and pressing issues of the time. In Maggie’s struggle to find love, acceptance, and economic security, Crane creates a portrait which mirrors the struggle of all the women of America at the end of the nineteenth-century. This edition includes a biographical afterword.

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