O Pioneers! | Study Guide

Willa Cather

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Course Hero. "O Pioneers! Study Guide." Course Hero. 27 Apr. 2018. Web. 6 June 2020. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/O-Pioneers/>.

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Course Hero. (2018, April 27). O Pioneers! Study Guide. In Course Hero. Retrieved June 6, 2020, from https://www.coursehero.com/lit/O-Pioneers/

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(Course Hero, 2018)



Course Hero. "O Pioneers! Study Guide." April 27, 2018. Accessed June 6, 2020. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/O-Pioneers/.


Course Hero, "O Pioneers! Study Guide," April 27, 2018, accessed June 6, 2020, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/O-Pioneers/.


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Willa Cather

Year Published





Historical Fiction

Perspective and Narrator

O Pioneers! is written in the third person with an omniscient narrator, who mostly stays close to the main characters' perspectives. Sometimes the narrator takes a much broader perspective, describing the overall action or using imagery to depict nature.


O Pioneers! is primarily in the past tense.

About the Title

The name of the novel O Pioneers! most likely comes from American poet Walt Whitman's poem titled "Pioneers! O Pioneers!" The poem is an ode to the early pioneers across the United States but is complex in its treatment of the pioneers' relationship with nature. Parallels certainly exist between Whitman's poem and Cather's story set on the Nebraska plains.


This study guide and infographic for Willa Cather's O Pioneers! offer summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents and Q&A pairs.

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