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My Antonia

            The Novel My Antonia, is a story of a young Bohemain immigrant girl, Antonia .
             Shimerda, on the central plains in Black Hawk, Nebraska. The story in narrated by a young boy, .
             Antonia's neighbor, Jim Burden. Jim, because of his parents death, finds himself in .
             Nebraska living with his father's parents. This is where he meets Antonia. This novel, written .
             by Willa Cather, is a story of Jim's experiences and memories relating to Antonia. Through .
             Antonia Shimerda, and other characters throughout the novel, My Antonia, including Lea .
             Lingard, Jim's Grandparents and Mrs. Harling, Jim Burden learns important lessons that enrich .
             his life and shape him to become the man he is at the end of the novel, who is able embrace .
             Antonia's country family. .
             Lena Lingard, a country girl about Jim's age, becomes a very important symbol .
             throughout the book. When Lena first enters the scenes, in the Harlings" household, we see a .
             poised and graceful woman. During the duration of this visit, Antonia is not very cordial to .
             Lena. Although they are both "hired girls", Lena is an object of men's affections while Antonia is .
             not, despite her beauty. Once in the novel, when Jim tries to kiss Antonia, she scolds him. He .
             defensively tells Antonia that Lena has let him kiss her passionately. To men, Lena represents .
             the delights of love without responsibility, and the differences between her and Antonia are very .
             distinct. In many ways, the character of Lena molds Jim in many ways to embrace Antonia's .
             country family. Lena represents the opposite of Antonia, a way for Jim to see what Antonia .
             might have ended up like, had she allowed the same things as Lena. She also represents how .
             Antonia and Jim's relationship might have been, had Jim been able to express his romantic .
             feelings for Antonia.
             Josiah and Emmaline Burden, Jim's grandparents are key characters in the novel, My .
             Antonia. His Grandmother's shining example of love, is a great influence in his life.

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