At-A-Site Theater presents a Summer Project Celebrating Birthdays of Dead Writers: Bret Harte, August 25

AUGUST 25, 2014

BRET HARTE (1836-1902)

Location:   Downtown Asheville NC

Time:         5:30pm - 7:30pm

On the corner of North Lexington Ave & Walnut St map link
or Haywood St near Malaprops map link 
or the "Iron" sculpture at Wall St & Battery Park Ave   map link

(Please note:  The Reader may occasionally need to move to an alternative site because of weather or other onsite circumstances)


Passersby are invited to chose from a menu of selections by this American short-story writer, journalist and poet, whose stories of the California West during the Gold Rush era brought a new dimension of compassion and sensitivity to people who had previously been portrayed in highly simplistic and stereotypical "Wild West" style.

The selection from will then be read out loud to the Listener.

Harte often went against the current opinions and mores of his time by speaking out against injustice to the treatment in the West of American Indians and Chinese immigrants, as well as the double standards placed on women in Western communities. Later in life he lived abroad in England partly to escape the small-mindedness of American society.

Mark Twain in his younger years had disparaged Harte, but in the later pages of his Autobiography wrote: “By ancient training and inherited habits, I have been heaping blame after blame, censure after censure, upon Bret Harte, and have felt the things I have said, but when my temper is cool I have no censures for him. The law of his nature was stonger than man's statutes and he had to obey it."

More information about Bret Harte (born Francis Brett Hart) can be found at Wikipedia and at American Passages and at American Literature where you can read many of his stories and books online, or at Poem Hunter where you can read his poesm online.


"I fear I cannot claim any higher motive than to illustrate an era of which Californian history has preserved the incidents more often than the character of the actors. … And I shall be quite content to have collected here merely the materials for the Iliad that is yet to be sung.”



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