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Main Street (Modern Library) av Sinclair…
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Main Street (Modern Library) (utgåvan 1999)

av Sinclair Lewis

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
3,529602,630 (3.75)343
Carol Milford, educated, sophisticated, and energetic, has ambitious plans for her life. Her studies have prepared her to join an enlightened, progressive society. But after she becomes Carol Kennicott, the wife of a small town physician, she quickly learns that she is to be nothing more than a gracious wife. Frustrated and torn between the challenge of social change and the comfort of personal security, she begins to understand the cost of conformity--and rebellion.… (mer)
Medlem:midemcrk
Titel:Main Street (Modern Library)
Författare:Sinclair Lewis
Info:Modern Library (1999), Paperback, 448 pages
Samlingar:Ditt bibliotek
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Taggar:Ingen/inga

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Storgatan : Carol Kennicotts historia av Sinclair Lewis

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Main Street is about an idealistic young woman, Carol, who is wanting to change a small town. These changes vary as the story unfolds. She moves the village with her new husband, who is a doctor.
Most of the men are Good Ol' Boys that are conservative in their outlook.
The husband was one of them: "To him, motoring was a faith not to be questioned, a high-church cult, with electric sparks for candles and piston-rings possessing the sanctity of altar-vessels."
The wives are generally gossips and are conservative as their husbands. Carol meets roadblock after roadblock on her ideas. She is attracted to the few men that aren't accepted in the good old boys club. She daydreams about running away with one of them but realizes that it wouldn't last.
After several ups and downs, she realizes that mostly she can like the people while still not agreeing with them.
The story is an interesting read, and even though the story starts before World War I, it reads like a modern story. ( )
  Pharmacdon | Dec 20, 2020 |
A networking acquaintance gave me this book in a box of books. Mine has a "new introduction by Thomas Mallon" which I appreciated since it gave a bit of background on the book and points to look for while reading. I guess this is considered a classic--though it wasn't ever on a required reading list during my schooling.

I found it quite dull. I'm not quite sure what I was supposed to take away from reading it. It seemed overly long.

I'm not sure what Carol thought marriage would (or should) be--apparently something different than what she got. She rarely seems content and when she is content, it doesn't last long.

Neither Carol nor Will seem to listen to each other. I'm not sure this bodes well for their marriage. In real life, in modern times, they'd probably be divorced. Of course, in modern times, Carol would have many occupational options too. I don't think Carol is necessarily wrong in wanting to make changes--maybe not all the changes she wants to make, but some changes. I can understand her discouragement when many of the changes she proposes are poo-poohed or dismissed. And I realize that many ways in which we'd be able to pursue Carol's interests today were probably not available to her then (no world wide web etc.) but . . . perhaps there would have been ways for her to "feed" her interests without having to involve the whole town?

Carol seems to want to change Will--but it's hard to change someone who doesn't want to change. Will doesn't seem to take into account his wife's interests. He doesn't have to take up everything she proposes, but certainly it wouldn't hurt to ask her to read him a poem on a winter's night while they sit by the fire--he could whittle while she reads aloud etc. Or perhaps he could order up a special book for their anniversary or Christmas that would interest his wife--plays, a series of essays on a topic she's interested in, those old style "photo" viewers with photos of many of the world's famous sites, etc. I kind of have the feeling that he's the type of husband who gives you a mop as a present because you need one...a practical gift, but not something that makes a wife feel loved or special. ( )
  JenniferRobb | Dec 4, 2020 |
I love books where I'm not sure how I'm 'supposed' to feel about a character, because that usually means the characters are fully realized creations and not stereotypes. It also often means I have some examining of my own personality and choices to do.... In Main Street, I found myself simultaneously irritated by, sympathetic to and identifying with Carole as she struggles to adapt to life and marriage in a small Minnesota town. Even though this was set around 100 years ago, there was much to recognize of today in the attitudes of the main characters. The reformer who doesn't bother to learn about the place she's trying to reform, the small town gossip who provides a sympathetic ear and then repeats everything you say, the parent who refuses to believe a single bad word about her baby...the list goes on. While this probably isn't the book you'd turn to if you're looking for a ripping plot (very little really happens) its a slice of life from the past that still resonates today. ( )
1 rösta Jthierer | Aug 24, 2020 |
Carol is a college-educated woman who works in a library in the big city. She meets and marries Will Kennicott, a doctor who practises in the town of Gopher Prairie, Minnesota. Main Street follows Carol as she attempts to get by socially in the town while attempting to raise its aspirations; the townsfolk seem unambitious, willing to settle for mediocrity, and prone to gossiping about anyone who is even remotely different.

This book was interesting at first but eventually became frustrating as Carol became more mired in the life of Gopher Prairie, shrinking into something small and provincial but still fighting to bring theatre to the town. I wanted to slap Will for being so obtuse and shake the petty little housewives. Ultimately a book that I respect for being one of the first American novels of this kind, but not one I will like. ( )
  rabbitprincess | May 23, 2020 |
I set a goal to read at least one classic book each month. This was my choice for July, as it overlapped with research interests in the period.

Carol is a liberal, proudly-literate young woman of Minneapolis who marries a doctor and ends up in the small town of Gopher Prairie. She thinks she's going to reform and enlighten the entire town--indeed, even raze Main Street to the ground and rebuild it Georgian-style. Young and naive as she is, she is genuinely shocked and hurt by her reception by the town's well-established cliques who have zero desire to change. Again and again, she tries to make friends and to fight through the enraging mindless boredom of what it means to be a doctor's wife in a small town, where she's supposed to be satisfied with her life of comfort and strain neither her body or mind. Again and again, she fails, becoming increasingly dissatisfied in her marriage and everything that is embodied by Main Street.

My gosh, but Lewis can write. His Babbit impressed me, but Main Street delves deep into the very psychology of a small town. He shows the full ranges of personalities, the social stratification, and the petty, horrible gossip that is the primary hobby for many. Even more, he goes deep into Carol's psychology. He totally gets how it feels to be a woman stuck at home, bored mindless, and afraid of staying in that dread loneliness forevermore; many modern male writers can't do justice to that despair, but Lewis did, and in the 1920s. I also appreciate how his nuanced portrayal doesn't make Carol into a martyr (though she does feel like that at times). Quite often, Carols brings trouble upon herself, but by keeping the point of view with her the majority of the time, we can still sympathize (even if we kinda wanna slap her).

The book also acts like a camera to depict life in a small town on the Minnesota prairie through the 1920s. That means camaraderie, at times, but it also means outright sexism and racism. While minstrel shows and playing at being Chinese get brief mentions, the most blatant racism throughout is the social and racial line between the Anglo-Saxon town elite and the Nordic and Germanic people who make up the common laborers and farmers. Carol is the only one willing to cross those lines--becoming friends with 'the help'--because of her deep loneliness, and it sadly perpetuates the cycle for her. Her efforts to stand up for the newly-arrived artistic sissy--so derided by the manly-men of town, they call him by a woman's name--don't end well, either.

This is truly a masterful read, a rare classic that holds up due to the skill of its writing. I don't often like literary fiction, and many of the subjects here would immediately make me stop reading other books. But Lewis handled everything with such a deft hand, I felt as anxious at times as I might if I read a modern thriller. Mind you, other readers might not feel that way, but I strongly related to Carol in her isolation, and that made this a surprisingly quick read for me. ( )
1 rösta ladycato | Jul 20, 2019 |
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Ninety years after publication, Sinclair Lewis’s Main Street still resonates with readers ... The book became an immediate sensation. Biographer Mark Schorer called its publication “the most sensational event in twentieth-century American publishing history.” ... Lewis found a way to appeal to both those who were nostalgic for small town America and those who were dissatisfied with it.
 

» Lägg till fler författare (26 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
Lewis, Sinclairprimär författarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Mallon, ThomasInledningmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Schorer, MarkEfterordmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
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To James Branch Cabell and Joseph Hergesheimer
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Chapter 1
On a hill by the Mississippi where Chippewas camped two generations ago, a girl stood in relief against the cornflower blue of Northern sky.
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She had her freedom, and it was empty.
Not a matter of heroism. Matter of endurance...There's one attack you can make on it, perhaps the only kind that accomplishes anything anywhere; you can keep on looking at one thing after another in your home and church and bank, and ask why it is, and who first laid down the law that it had to be that way. If enough of us do this impolitely enough, then we'll become civilized in merely twenty thousand years or so, instead of having to wait the two hundred thousand years that my cynical anthropologist friends allow...easy, pleasant, lucrative home-work for wives: asking people to define their jobs. That's the most dangerous doctrine I know!
The tragedy of old age, which is not that it is less vigorous than youth, but that it is not needed by youth; that its love and prosy sageness, so important a few years ago, so gladly offered now, are rejected with laughter.
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(Klicka för att visa. Varning: Kan innehålla spoilers.)
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Main Street was written by Sinclair Lewis, not Upton Sinclair, so you might want to correct the author on your book page.  Thank you.
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Carol Milford, educated, sophisticated, and energetic, has ambitious plans for her life. Her studies have prepared her to join an enlightened, progressive society. But after she becomes Carol Kennicott, the wife of a small town physician, she quickly learns that she is to be nothing more than a gracious wife. Frustrated and torn between the challenge of social change and the comfort of personal security, she begins to understand the cost of conformity--and rebellion.

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