Rereading Little Women
and Louisa May Alcott
The Afterlife of Little Women by Beverly Lyon Clark. Johns Hopkins Press,2015, 288 pp., $44.95 (hardcover).
Meg, Jo, Beth, Amy: The Story of Little Women and Why It Still Matters byAnne Boyd Rioux. W. W. Norton, 2018, 288 pp., $16.95 (paper).
March Sisters: On Life, Death, and Little Women by Kate Bolick, JennyZhang, Carmen Maria Machado, and Jane Smiley. Library of America,2019, 196 pp., $21.95 (hardcover).
Marmee & Louisa: The Untold Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Mother
by Eve LaPlante. Simon and Schuster, 2012, 384 pp., $18.00 (paper).
Little Women directed by Greta Gerwig, Columbia Pictures, 2019.
Little Women directed by Vanessa Caswill, BBC Television, 2017.
You likely know the plot of Louisa May Alcott’s 1868–1869 novel, LittleWomen. Whether you’ve read the book or seen one of its adaptations forfilm or screen, you probably have some recollection of the four Marchsisters’ comings-of-age in New England during and just after the CivilWar. Poor but resourceful, the sisters are Meg, who dreams of wealthand fame as an actress but finds fulfillment in marriage and motherhood; Jo, the strong-willed writer, who helps support the family bypublishing potboilers, then sets aside her literary aspirations to launch