Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts




Ellen Glasgow's native state, the Commonwealth of Virginia, was a constituent portion of her. "I am Virginian in every drop of my blood and pulse of my heart...," she said. With her Virginia she wove a rich background for her novels. At times the cloth was homespun like the background of the Burrs in THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE; at other times it was of a finer texture as in VIRGINIA; yet again it was a rich tapestry for people like the Archibalds in THE SHELTERED LIFE.

Ellen Glasgow has contributed to world literature, in polished, exquisite form, an unbiased picture of Virginia. Beginning with the plantation scenes of 1850 in THE BATTLEGROUND, she takes her readers through almost a century of Virginia scenes and life. The reader sees back country, towns, cities through the changing years until Richmond in 1940 is portrayed in the novel, IN THIS OUR LIFE. Had Ellen Glasgow lived to write the contemplated novel, BEYOND DEFEAT, it is probable that she would have again portrayed Virginians against a Virginia landscape.