Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Richard Powers's The Overstory. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
The Overstory: Introduction
The Overstory: Plot Summary
The Overstory: Detailed Summary & Analysis
The Overstory: Themes
The Overstory: Quotes
The Overstory: Characters
The Overstory: Symbols
The Overstory: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Richard Powers
Historical Context of The Overstory
Other Books Related to The Overstory
- Full Title: The Overstory
- Where Written: Stanford University, California, and the Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee
- When Published: 2018
- Literary Period: Contemporary
- Genre: Novel, Eco-Fiction
- Setting: The U.S., mostly California and Oregon
- Climax: Mimi Ma, Nicholas Hoel, Adam Appich, Douglas Pavlicek, and Olivia Vandergriff set fire to logging equipment in Idaho, and Olivia is killed in the fire.
- Antagonist: Humboldt Timber, other logging companies, human greed and short-sightedness
- Point of View: Third-Person Omniscient
Extra Credit for The Overstory
Inspiration. Powers had written about environmentalism before, but he became focused on trees and was inspired to write The Overstory after first encountering a giant redwood at Stanford University.