Questions and Answers for My Antonia

My Antonia

In "My Antonia", why does Mr. Shimerda feel the need to take his own life? In what ways was he humiliated and...

As the narrator, Jim Burden, so acutely observes, "it was homesickness that killed Mr. Shimerda" (Chapter XIV). In the old country, Mr. Shimerda was a weaver and a musician. He was happy...

Latest answer posted July 21, 2008 1:12 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

What is the correct pronunciation of "Antonia" from the novel My Antonia?

In my copy, there is a footnote on the first page in Chapter 1 which explains how the name is pronounced. It reads as follows:"The Bohemian name Antonia is strongly accented on the first...

Latest answer posted August 23, 2007 9:13 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

Who are Peter and Pavel in My Antonia?

In the 1918 novel My Ántonia by Willa Cather, Peter and Pavel are two Russian immigrants living on a small farm in America. Peter is a physically large and friendly character who is willing to...

Latest answer posted January 5, 2019 4:50 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What are some important figurative language quotes in My Antonia?

In the following quotes from early on in the novel, figurative language exalts the prairie and expresses happiness as a merger into nature. In the first quote, from early in the novel, Jim...

Latest answer posted September 29, 2017 11:57 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What are a few comparisons and contrasts between Jim Burden and Antonia Shimerda?

Although both Jim Burden and Antonia Shimerda are new to Nebraska (they arrive at the same time), Jim is an American who has to leave Virginia after his parents' deaths to live with his...

Latest answer posted April 30, 2018 12:24 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

In My Antonia, why is Antonia so important to Jim?

In the novel, Antonia is important to Jim because she is the personification of all the things that he holds dear. In his mind, she is a connection to his new home in Nebraska and his early teen...

Latest answer posted April 13, 2019 10:44 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

Who are the “hired girls”? How are they different from other people in Black Hawk?

In Black Hawk, the "hired girls" are all daughters of immigrant farmers; they are country girls, as opposed to the town girls in Black Hawk. These hired girls work to help their families pay off...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2018 8:14 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

How does Jim's life change when he turns thirteen in "My Antonia"?

Jim was ten when he came to live with his grandparents on the prairie. Three years later, when he turned thirteen, his grandparents decided to move away from the farm to the nearby city of Black...

Latest answer posted December 14, 2008 12:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, describe the nature of the relationship between Jim and Ántonia. In what ways do they form a special...

The nature of the relationship between Jim and Antonia reflects idealism and transcendence can exist in the interactions between human beings. While time changes both Jim and Antonia, there is...

Latest answer posted August 12, 2014 11:38 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

What are the three ways characters commit suicide in My Ántonia? Why do you think Cather includes these examples?

Ántonia's father, Mr. Shimerda, commits suicide by going into the family's barn and putting the barrel of his shotgun in his mouth. He uses his big toe to pull the trigger. His despair and...

Latest answer posted February 28, 2020 1:44 pm UTC

4 educator answers

My Antonia

What is Antonia's response to the idea of raising her child by herself in My Antonia?

Antonia approaches the prospect of raising her child by herself with an attitude of strength and determination. Mrs. Stevens says about Antonia, "Antonia's got on fine. She'd loved (the baby) from...

Latest answer posted October 7, 2010 12:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

Describe Antonia at the end of the book. how has she change, and in what way does she stay the same? Antonia is...

When the reader first meets Antonia, she is a young girl. She is full of hope and plans for the future. She wants to learn English, she wants to go to school. After her father dies, however, she...

Latest answer posted October 11, 2010 1:25 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

What are some differences between the Shimerdas and Burdens?

There are several key differences between the two main families featured in My Ántonia. The Burdens are the family of Jim Burden, the orphaned boy who's the novel's narrator and protagonist, while...

Latest answer posted December 1, 2017 6:44 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

What is Jim's view of the hired girls and the town girls in "My Antonia"?

In the town of Black Hawk, Nebraska, a firm social class distinction separated the town girls, those whose parents were born in America, from the hired girls, those whose parents were immigrants....

Latest answer posted June 16, 2019 7:25 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What is the role of the landscape in Willa Cather's My Antonia?

The prairie is as much a character in Cather’s book as Jim or Antonia herself. Like Antonia, for example, the land around Black Hawk also grows and develops over the course of the book, starting...

Latest answer posted August 12, 2018 11:22 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

In the book My Antonia, how does the symbolism of dancing show something about the characters?

The way that different characters react to the dancing pavilion reveals a lot about them. The hired girls (Antonia, Lena, etc) all enjoy dancing at the pavilion, while the town girls do not. The...

Latest answer posted March 29, 2012 1:21 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

Antonia faces hardships and challenges many times in her life. Describe one hardship or challenge she faces and how...

One key incident that showed Antonia’s strength of character and determination to succeed on her own terms was her failed engagement to Larry Donovan. Antonia had enjoyed some relatively carefree...

Latest answer posted March 24, 2019 4:12 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

In at least three sentences tell how Antonia is representative of a pioneer woman in the book "My Antonia?"

In the novel, "My Antonia" by Willa Cather Antonia is the model of a successful pioneer woman because she is a survivor. She is an immigrant that has been moved to a new country. This takes...

Latest answer posted March 1, 2009 2:44 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

Why is Jim an unreliable narrator in My Antonia?

Willa Cather’s My Antonia is a story set in the American Midwest near the turn of the twentieth century. Readers of this novel can relate Antonia Shimerda’s journey to that of Cather’s since the...

Latest answer posted February 25, 2020 10:07 pm UTC

4 educator answers

My Antonia

In "My Antonia", Jim and Antonia arrive in Black Hawk at the same time.  How are their situations different?

Although Jim and Antonia arrive in Black Hawk at the same time, their situations are entirely different. Jim has been sent to Nebraska to live with his paternal grandparents because his parents...

Latest answer posted July 23, 2008 6:58 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, in what three ways were the arrivals of Jim Burden and Antonia Shimerda in Nebraska different? In Book...

Jim Burden and Antonia Shimerda arrive in Black Hawk, Nebraska at the same time, but their situations are different in a number of ways. First of all, compared to Antonia, Jim has come a relatively...

Latest answer posted April 29, 2010 7:41 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, what did Lena, Tiny, and Antonia consider the basis of success, and how well did they achieve it?

For Antonia, life is a constant battle of being caught between the happiness and optimism that comes naturally to her and the unfortunate circumstances that seem to follow her through life. For...

Latest answer posted March 17, 2020 7:57 pm UTC

4 educator answers

My Antonia

How does Cather's use of setting in My Antonia move the novel through its paces? How does it bring to the reader's...

Willa Cather’s 1918 novel, My Antonia, is a perfect example of literary regionalism. The Nebraskan landscape directly contributes to the emotional growth (or decline, in some cases) and the...

Latest answer posted April 22, 2019 6:37 pm UTC

3 educator answers

My Antonia

What is the relationship between the Shimerda and the Burden households in "My Antonia"? What kind of relationship...

The Burdens befriend the Shimerdas, and the Shimerdas come to Nebraska ill-equipped for life on the prairie. While the families are on friendly terms, there is a tension that arises between them....

Latest answer posted April 4, 2018 11:49 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

 What is significant about antonia's decline of Jim's offer to go the schoolhouse, does Jim misunderstood Antonia's...

Jim asks Ántonia if she would like to go to school for the next semester. Ántonia refuses, saying that she is kept too busy by farm work: Ántonia stood up, lifting and dropping her shoulders as if...

Latest answer posted October 3, 2010 11:23 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In Willa Cather's My Antonia, how is Jim's view of the hired girls and the towns-girls different from the...

In Willa Cather's novel My Antonia, the story is told from Jim Burden's point of view. While Jim may be considered nostalgic (and is even told by Francis that he is a romantic), he holds a special...

Latest answer posted January 12, 2011 9:01 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

symbolish How does Cather use the seasons to symbolize the human emotion and change throughtout the book?

It seems to me that in the novel, winter symbolizes the hardship and suffering Antonia's family survives. However, when spring and summer arrive, new life comes to everyone, but especially to...

Latest answer posted January 14, 2011 2:21 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

What impression do you receive from the snake-killing scene? (chapter VII) What impression do you receive from the...

The initial impression I get from the incident with the rattlesnake is that Jim has now really gone up in Ántonia’s estimation. Previously, she’s acted superior towards him on account of their age...

Latest answer posted August 3, 2018 10:34 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

In "My Antonia", what is Antonia's motivation when she says this quote about her work on the farm?...

Antonia makes this statement to Jim when he relays the suggestion made by his grandmother that Antonia attend the term of school that is to begin in a week. Antonia, who has been doing brutally...

Latest answer posted July 25, 2008 12:19 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, how does setting play an important role or affect Jim Burden?

British novelist W. Somerset Maugham wrote, It is very difficult to know people. For, men and women are not only themselves, they are also the region in which they are born....You can know them...

Latest answer posted January 19, 2015 3:59 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, what does Jim mean when he says the following quote about Ántonia? "She lent herself to immemorial...

The above quote indicates the very powerful magnetism that Antonia exerts on Jim, the narrator of this novel, throughout the story. Remember the title of this book and how it represents the way...

Latest answer posted November 20, 2012 8:14 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

Compare the view Lena, Antonia, and Tiny have about success in life. Do they achieve success according to their...

All three find their own measure of "success," although each must undergo hardship before they can attain it. You are right to qualify the term "success" with "by their own standards," since...

Latest answer posted December 1, 2018 3:02 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What is the tone of My Antonia by Willa Carther?

The tone of a work of literature is of course the attitude of the author towards a subject, character or theme. The overwhelming focus of this great pioneer work of American Literature is the...

Latest answer posted March 3, 2011 7:11 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In "My Antonia," how is it significant that, by novel's end, Antonia has reverted to speaking Bohemian with her...

I think the fact that Antonia speaks her native language simply supports the theme that through all of her experiences, good and bad, joyful and devastating, that she has remained the person she...

Latest answer posted January 14, 2011 2:14 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

In the book My Antonia, name and discuss three characteristics that Antonia exhibits that lead to Cather's admiration.

An author of a novel is not necessarily the narrator of that novel. In this case, the author of My Ántonia, Willa Cather, is different from the narrator, who is a fictional character named Jim...

Latest answer posted December 20, 2019 3:10 pm UTC

3 educator answers

My Antonia

Does Antonia have stronger feelings for Bohemia or for Nebraska? What does Antonia's predicament say about the...

To answer both questions similarly, Antonia's feelings towards Bohemia remain strong even as she grows accustomed to Nebraska, and this echoes the plight of many immigrants of the time.To be sure,...

Latest answer posted October 23, 2007 1:03 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

Why does Mrs. Shimerda resent the Burdens at times in My Antonia?

Mrs. Shimerda resents the Burdens at times because they are well-off enough to live comfortably, and she and her family have nothing. As Grandmother kindly explains to Jim, "a body never knows...

Latest answer posted August 3, 2009 1:08 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In the book My Antonia who learns more through their relationship, Jim or Antonia? I need three reasons. I actually...

I think, for practical reasons, the answer has to be Jim. The story is told from Jim’s point of view, so whatever lessons Antonia might have learned are simply the ones Jim thinks she has learned....

Latest answer posted May 30, 2018 12:12 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What does Jim Burden mean when he says, "There was nothing but land: not a country at all, but the material out of...

This quote is expressing Jim's reaction when he first encounters the wide open unsettled expanses surrounding his grandparents' farm. Coming from Virginia, the surroundings appear undeveloped, but...

Latest answer posted September 20, 2012 10:38 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

What would Jim Burden say in his graduation speech?  

Given that Jim Burden has always been an introspective character, especially considering his role in this book as the all-seeing eye over the Nebraska prairie land, I believe he would speak about...

Latest answer posted December 5, 2017 2:52 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

Why does young Jim come to Nebraska to live?

Well, yes, the previous answer is correct, Jim is an orphan and has to travel to Nebraska to live with his grandparents. This makes for an interesting story though, because that fact that he is an...

Latest answer posted October 15, 2010 5:03 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

How is religion treated in My Antonia, and which religion  is shown in a better light?

When Mr. Shimerda kills himself or dies (depending on your interpretation of the scene) the entire saga seems to suggest that the Shimerda's particular brand of religion is entirely rigid, unwieldy...

Latest answer posted October 17, 2007 11:35 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What techniques are used in My Antonia to make the descriptions of the landscape vivid?

More than anything else what lingers on in the mind after reading this book is the intense, passionate and above all evocative way that the landscape of the frontier is described in this work and...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2011 7:41 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia how do the surroundings, or how does the setting, affect Antonia and how does that effect help...

It is a curious characteristic of many who have lived and, especially, farmed in the prairie states and the plains states that, while to the casual observer of these areas there is little beauty in...

Latest answer posted January 20, 2015 9:19 pm UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What does Mr. Shimerda want Jim to do for Antonia? 

Mr. Shimerda never fully settles down in America. In fact, he never even wanted to come over in the first place. His inability to speak English is just one of many reasons why he doesn't fit in to...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2019 6:37 am UTC

2 educator answers

My Antonia

What elements shaped Antonia's personality and character?

It's not clear from your question which section of the novel you are referring to. If you are referring to the early parts of the novel, I would suggest that while Antonia's important character...

Latest answer posted February 19, 2009 7:29 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

To what extent does Cather make us (the reader) disappointed that Jim and Antonia do not marry? 

This question doesn't have one answer: not every reader, of course, will react the same way to the story. (Nor can we know exactly how much Willa Cather, author of the novel My Àntonia, was trying...

Latest answer posted December 13, 2017 1:03 pm UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, how does the narrator use adjectives and descriptive phrases to convey his feelings of awe and...

It is clear from this moving and lyrical novel that Antonia is a character who exerts a curious magnetism and fascination on the narrator. One of the most memorable descriptions about this...

Latest answer posted November 19, 2012 8:13 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, what is a good thesis statement for Book Four? 

As the title of Book IV suggests, this section of the book is all about the different fates of the three pioneer women explored in the novel: Lena, Tiny and Antonia. The three women have enjoyed...

Latest answer posted May 6, 2013 6:18 am UTC

1 educator answer

My Antonia

In My Antonia, who learns more through their friendship, Jim or Antonia?

In Willa Cather’s novel, My Antonia, the author relates a story about the settling of the American Midwest near the turn of the twentieth century. Much of Cather’s perspective comes from her...

Latest answer posted February 19, 2020 9:51 pm UTC

3 educator answers

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