Daughter of Earth
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FP Price:$12.76
  • Paperback Edition
  • ISBN: 978-0-935312-68-3
  • Publication Date: 03-01-1987
  • Page Count: 432
  • Categories: Fiction
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"Following the completion of Daughter of Earth, her only novel, AGNES SMEDLEY (1892-1950) went to China, where she lived from 1928 until 1941. Her extensive writings about China are excerpted in the anthology Portraits of Chinese Women in Revolution. Today, she lies buried in Peking beneath a gravestone inscribed ""Friend of China.""

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Daughter of Earth

Agnes Smedley

Foreword by Alice Walker. Afterword by Nancy Hoffman.

This gritty autobiographical novel recreates the amazing life story of an American working class woman. Revered writer and activist Agnes Smedley worked to advance the cause of human justice on three continents as a writer and political activist. Here, she relives in fictionalized form her first 33 years—growing up on the wrong side of the tracks; discovering double standards of class, race, and sex among East Coast intellectuals; facing false espionage charges; and maintaining her independence through two tormented marriages.

"Agnes Smedley's memories tasted of hunger."

—Myra Jehlen, The New York Times Book Review

"A tale of American disinheritance told from the inside out, [this novel] is essentially about Smedley's struggle to come to spiritual consciousness in a world of unimaginable cruelty and deprivation. . . . An entire society is limned in the pages of this book. . . . The power of Daughter of Earth lies in the erotic heat which informs every page of the book, erotic in the original Greek sense of life force."

The Village Voice

"Daughter of Earth is a precious, priceless book. In it Agnes Smedley lays bare her soul in an effort to understand and heal her life. In the process, she . . . connects herself, as if there were no other options, to all people of her class and vision, regardless of color or sex. It is a remarkably rare affirmation."

—Alice Walker, from the Foreword

"This moving novel is both a catharsis through which Smedley purges the pain in her own experience by shaping it in language, and a political act inspiring others to take up the struggle for change. Anticipating most of the issues of the modern women's liberation movement, Daughter of Earth has emerged as one of the major texts of twentieth-century feminism."

—Deborah Rosenfelt, Professor of English and Director of Women's Studies, San Francisco State University

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