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Welty, Eudora.

Curtain of Green, A.


Inscribed to E.M. Forster
Welty, Eudora. A Curtain of Green and Other Stories. (With an introduction by Katherine Anne Porter.) New York: Harcourt, Brace and Company, [ca. 1944-1947].
8vo.; black cloth stamped in gilt; light wear; dust-jacket; light wear.
The first Harcourt Brace edition, preceded by the first edition in 1941. Published between 1944 - a date mentioned on the lower flap - and 1947 - the date of Welty's heartfelt inscription. With an introduction by Katherine Anne Porter, in which she not only provides a history of their friendship (three years old at the time of writing), and a biography of Welty, but also offers a critical assessment of Welty's career to date, her context in the realm of Southern writers and on the greater literary landscape, and speaks to the role of women in her work, and women as her readers.
A presentation copy, inscribed on the front endpaper to E.M. Forster: Dear Mr. Forster, since this is / a present to you I wish more / than ever it had turned out / a better book - with best / regards and good wishes, / Eudora Welty. / June 1947. The work of E.M. Forster was an early and aggressive influence on Welty. He sent her a letter admiring her own writing in the spring of 1947, complimenting her on The Wide Net (1943).
It was several minutes before she was able to read the signature, partly because Forster's handwriting was illegible and partly because of her disbelief. "The letter was kindness, undreamed of kindness," she said, and it bore the marks of her tears she said at a centenary celebration of Forster in 1979. Forster had reinforced her "instinctive belief that mystery in human relationships exists per se," and had strengthened her "recognition of place as a primary source of enlightenment in fiction."  (Waldron, Eudora Welty, A Writer's Life, p. 178)

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