Quotation by Willa Cather

There is a popular superstition that "realism" asserts itself in the cataloguing of a great number of material objects, in explaining mechanical processes, the methods of operating manufactories and trades, and in minutely and unsparingly describing physical sensations. But is not realism, more than it is anything else, an attitude of mind on the part of the writer toward his material, a vague indication of the sympathy and candour with which he accepts, rather than chooses, his theme?
Willa Cather (1873–1947), U.S. novelist. Originally published in The New Republic (1922). "The Novel Demeuble," repr. In Willa Cather on Writing, University of Nebraska Press (1988).
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