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Thesis (M.A)—University of Nebraska—Lincoln, 1935. Department of English.


Copyright 1935, the author. Used by permission.


In his published works, Ole Edward Rolvaag attempts to present truthfully the life of the immigrant in America.During the period of time in which Rolvaag authored his works there had been little written about the life of an immigrant coming to America due to the fact that very few writers of the time understood the psychology of the immigrants’ problems of adjustment to a new life in the United States.Rolvaag being an immigrant himself, was well suited to present the history and viewpoint of an individual immigrating to the U.S.

This thesis explores the basic biography of Rolvaag’s background as well as his ability to capture the essence of what life as an immigrant was really like. This thesis examines works by authors such as Willa Cather and discusses why her works come close to, but do not capture the essence of life as an immigrant as well as Rolvaag could in his work, Giants in the Earth, because authors like Cather lack of the personal experience Rolvaag had as an immigrant himself.