Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘Jane Smiley’


“A Thousand Acres”

What is a farmer?

A farmer is a man who feeds the world.

What is a farmer’s first duty?

To grow more food.

What is a farmer’s second duty?

To buy more land.

Why does a society value appearances, secrets, and hard work over basic human rights? And, what does it say about a society that condemns a victim for speaking out against a perpetrator for unspeakable crimes? These are the questions Jane Smiley seems to be asking in her Pulitzer Prize winning novel, A Thousand Acres. Published in 1991, A Thousand Acres refers to that magic number of acreage that most midwest farmers ascribe to own – a thousand acres of rich, fertile Iowa farmland. It’s the number that sets one farmer apart from another, especially if the land has been handed down from generation to generation and is unencumbered by a mortgage. Read more »


“Ordinary Love and Good Will”

But it is not necessarily the ones you love the most that have the most effect on you.

Jane Smiley, Pulitzer prize-winning author of A Thousand Acres published Ordinary Love & Good Will – two short stories that explore the effects that people’s actions have on their children – in 1989. Although the stories are very different, the reader can’t help but see the long-lasting and indelible effects on the children of adults who don’t think about their behavior and consequences, who think of themselves first, who can’t control their urges, and who are often in denial. Read more »