Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women

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The famed author of Little Women, Louisa May Alcott’s life was no children’s book: she worked as a servant, a seamstress, and a Civil War nurse before becoming a millionaire celebrity writing “moral pap for the young,” as she called it. Under pen names and anonymously, she also wrote stories with enough drugs, sex, and crime to prove the author was no “little” woman. When she died, Alcott took her secret identity as a pulp fiction writer with her, and kept it for nearly a half-century.

Starring Elizabeth Marvel and featuring Jane Alexander, Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women tells the story of this remarkable woman’s quest to rescue her family from poverty and to find wealth, fame, and happiness for herself.

Raised in the center of 19th century New England’s great transcendentalist and abolitionist movements, Louisa May Alcott learned about literature from Ralph Waldo Emerson, went on nature walks with Henry David Thoreau, and saw the Civil War up close as an army nurse. Her story is also the story of three eras in American history: the Romantic Transcendental period, the Civil War, and the Gilded Age.

louisa may alcott book coverLouisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women

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harriet reisen Author Harriet Reisen discusses her biography of Alcott on the Forum Network.

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emily rooneyEmily Rooney talks to author Harriet Reisen and director Nancy Porter on Greater Boston.

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