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Zona Gale Biography

(1874–1938), Friendship Village, Birth, Miss Lulu Bett, Yellow Gentians and Blue, Bridal Pond

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Richard Furness Biography to Robert Murray Gilchrist Biography

American novelist and short-story writer, born in Portage, Wisconsin, educated at the University of Wisconsin. Her imaginary hamlet in rural Wisconsin was the setting for a series of short stories, beginning with Friendship Village (1908), which dramatized the shifting patterns of small-town America as it faced the encroachments of modernity. Novels like Birth (1918) and Miss Lulu Bett (1920; Pulitzer Prize) exhibit a more critical perspective on American life. Her later fiction was more preoccupied with spiritualism and the occult. Gale also wrote plays, verse, and more volumes of stories, such as Yellow Gentians and Blue (1927) and Bridal Pond (1930). Her support for Senator Robert LaFollette's Progressive party in Wisconsin drew Gale to such reformist causes as women's rights, pacificism, and prohibition.

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