The Gravedigger's Daughter
In 1936 the Schwarts, an immigrant family desperate to escape Nazi Germany, settle in a small town in upstate New York, where the father, a former high school teacher, is demeaned by the only job he can get: gravedigger and cemetery caretaker. After local prejudice and the family's own emotional frailty result in unspeakable tragedy, the gravedigger's daughter, Rebecca, b...more
So what's the dark fear that lies in the inner heart of all erudite nerds? Namely this -- that no matter how educated, intelligent or well-read you are, there are always going to be a certain amount of very well-known authors you have never read at all, not even one single page of, and that at any mom...more
This is my first Joyce Carol Oates read and was for a face to face bookclub. In general I'm not drawn to "women in jepordy" stories but I'm always willing to give something new a try.
I was drawn to the character Rebecca and wanted to see her life work out for the better. And ultimately things did get better for her. She finally did re-marry although she was permenently damaged from her first husband.
The worst t...more
Still, though, I keep picking them up. And as decently written as they may be, I'm miserable right along with everyone else. There's never a glimmer of hope, a break from the compounding gloom. As a reader, the weight lands firmly on your shoulders for the length of the book. Join us for a walk of pain.
Gravedigger's Daughter is no exception. I felt for the prota...more
"Mrs. Chester Gallagher
Each time she signed her new name it seemed to her that her handwr...more
Oates details the story of Rebecca Schwart's life from her earliest childhood and on. Rebecca is the third child of poor, immigrant Jewish parents who arrived in the States in the 30 and Rebecca was actually born in New York Harbor, making her a US citizen as the only one in the family.
The book starts with Rebecca thinking back...more
I finished this bo...more
It was a story of survival, escape. One family escapes the holocaust only to confront isolation and prejudice in America, eventually leading a father to insanity and self-destruction. The journey of the surviving daughter reveals another from of persecution--the persecution of women/ a wo...more
Men sure do suck.
So goes a running theme in the life of Rebecca Tignor, the perpetually put-upon heroine of Joyce Carol Oates' misery porn epic "The Gravedigger's Daughter." Rebecca works a soul-crushing and dangerous job on a sweatshop assembly line. She's harassed by co-workers, followed by strangers and married to a domineering husband who's often on the road where he finds ample opportunity to cheat. Life has made Rebecca so angry and defensive she's devel...more
Es un muy buen libro en el cual hay una unnumerable mezcla de acciones y sentimientos. Trata de una familia judía alemana que emigra a Estados Unidos huyendo de los nazis; es una familia disfuncional, llena de resentimientos, carente de amor y buenos modales en la que sólo se ve dolor y desgracia. Así que la hija menor, la hija del sepulturero, que es el empleo del padre, crece desubicada, sin conocer siquiera su verdadero apellido, sin conocer su verdadero lugar de nacimiento pero sabe abrirse...more
Rebecca Schwart’s life is all about fear. From the time she is a small child, fear rules her life. Daughter of immigrants who fled the Nazis, she lives in horrible poverty, her father being reduced from a high school math teacher in Germany to a cemetery caretaker in America. Understandably bitter by their reduced circumstances an...more
I decided to read this book as an independent reading book for my Literature Class.
I cannot say that I enjoyed this book. I would give it 3 1/2 stars if I could. It was long and boring and seemed to drag on forever without any remorse for poor Rebecca. Even in the end, I could tell that Rebecca was not entirely happy with her life, but she knew it was as good as it was going to get. However, I liked the fact that it produced a strong female char...more
Oates' compelling novel digs up somber themes buried in past
Jenny Shank, Special to The Rocky
Published June 15, 2007 at midnight
The Gravedigger's Daughter is Joyce Carol Oates' 36th novel (not including the 11 she's written under pseudonyms), but according to a press release, she has been at work on this book for 12 years. The harrowing story, the publisher notes, is "based on her own family's history in the upstate New York towns of the early...more