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My Ántonia

My Ántonia

by Willa Cather

Foreignness and 'The Other' Quotes

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #7

I turned back to the beginning of the third book, which we had read in class that morning. "Primus ego in patriam mecum ... deducam Musas"; "for I shall be the first, if I live, to bring the Muse into my country." (3.2.2)

This is an interesting passage because it reminds us of the importance of love for one's own country. The immigrants in this novel are in an interesting position, because they feel loyalty and homesickness for the countries they left behind, but they feel passionate and lovingly towards the new country they have decided to make their home.

Quote #8

[Cuzak] advanced to meet me and gave me a hard hand, burned red on the back and heavily coated with hair. He wore his Sunday clothes, very thick and hot for the weather, an unstarched white shirt, and a blue necktie with big white dots, like a little boy's, tied in a flowing bow. (5.2.8)

Now Cuzak is like the outsider – the only city man in a family full of farmers. The way that he dresses reveals that he longs for – and belongs to – the city life.

Quote #9

"A Ferris wheel," Rudolph entered the conversation in a deep baritone voice. He was six foot two, and had a chest like a young blacksmith. "We went to the big dance in the hall behind the saloon last night, mother, and I danced with all the girls, and so did father. I never saw so many pretty girls. It was a Bohunk crowd, for sure." (5.2.10)

"Bohunk" is a disparaging term for an unskilled foreign worker.

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