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Different Girls

ISBN13: 9781406783391
ISBN: 1406783390
Binding: Paperback
List Price: $8.45
Publisher: Gardner Press
Published Date:
Pages: 280

IT is many years now since the Amer ican Girl began to engage the conscious ness of the American novelist. Before the expansive period following the Civil War, in the later eighteen-sixties and the earlier eighteen-seventies, she had of course been his heroine, unless he went abroad for one in court circles, or back for one in the feudal ages. Until the time noted, she had been a heroine and then an American girl. After that she was an American girl, and then a hero ine and she was often studied against foreign backgrounds, in contrast with other international figures, and her value ascertained in comparison with their valuelessness, though sometimes she was portrayed in those poses of flirtation of which she was born mistress. Even in these her superiority to all other kinds of girls was insinuated if not asserted. The young ladies in the present col- vi Introduction lection are all American girls but one, if we are to suppose Mr. Le Gallienne s winning type to be of the same English origin as himself. We can be surer of him than of her, however but there is no question of the native Americanness of Mrs. Alexander s girl, who is done so strikingly to the life, with courage to grapple a character and a tem perament as uncommon as it is true, which we have rarely found among our nctionists. Having said this, we must hedge in favor of Miss Jordan s most autochthonic Miss Kittie, so young a girl as to be still almost a little girl, and with a head full of the ideals of littlegirlhood concerning young-girlhood. The pendant to her pretty picture is the study of elderly girlhood by Octave Thanet, or that by Miss Alice Brown, the one with its ideality, and the other with quot its humor. Thepathos of The Perfect Yearquot is as true as either in its truth quot to the girlhood which never knew an earthly close, quot and yet had its fill of rapture. Julian Ralph s strong and free sketch contributes a fresh East Side flower, hollyhock-like in its gaudiness, to the garden of American girls, Irish- American in this case, but destined to be companioned hereafter by blossoms Introduction vii of our Italian-American, Yiddish-Amer ican, and Russian-American civilization, as soon as our nascent novelists shall have the eye to see and the art to show them. Meantime, here are some of our Different Girls as far as they or their photographers have got, and their ac quaintance is worth having. W. D. H. The Little Joys of Margaret BY RICHARD LE GALLIENNE had seenher five sisters one by one leave the family nest, to set up little nests of their own. Her brother, the eldest child of a family of seven, had left the old home almost beyond memory, and settled in London. Now and again he made a flying visit to the small provincial town of his birth, and sometimes he sent two little daugh ters to represent him for he was al ready a widowed man, and relied occa sionally on the old roof-tree to replace the lost mother. Margaret had seen what sympathetic spectators called her quot quot fate slowly approaching for some time particularly when, five years ago, she had broken off her engagement with a worthless boy. She had loved him deeply, and, had she loved him less, a refined girl in the provinces does not find it easy to replace a discarded suitor for the choice of young men is not ex- D. G...