John Steinbeck: “The White Quail”

(1952 words)

John Steinbeck’s short story “The White Quail” first appeared in print in The North American Review in 1935 and was subsequently reprinted in a collection entitled The Long Valley in 1938. Told in six episodes, the story revolves around a typical Steinbeck theme – an identification with the land and nature as a living entity. Unfortunately, this admirable trait is warped by the central character of the story, Mary Teller, an individual who manipulates and controls the world around her, imposing her personal ideas of what is “right” on nature and changing her surroundings to fit that conception. By creating a contrived and artificial atmosphere in her beloved garden, Mary attempts to t…

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Meyer, Michael J.. "“The White Quail”". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 06 November 2008
[, accessed 03 July 2015.]