HUSL 6308 readings in

Rethinking the Short Story


Pickering, Fiction 100 (12th ed)*. + “Reader‟s Guide to the Short Story May, The New Short Story Theories Lohafer, Coming to Terms with the Short Story (some copies available at Off-Campus Books; others available from articles / chapters on e-reserve at McDermott Library *student-instructor may choose stories not assigned to a particular topic or a story not in Fiction 100, provided that copies are provided a week in advance.

Class Date 1. 1/11

Topics, Instructor, Readings Introduction



Elements and Structure of the Short Story Theme vs. Meaning instructor: M. Cohen story: Mansfield, “The Fly” (packet) Lessing, “Wine” Crane, “The Blue Hotel” readings: “Theme” (“Reader‟s Guide”) textbook definitions of “theme” (packet or handout) Flannery O‟Connor on theme (packet)



Enlargements of Meanings: Symbol and Allegory instructor: story: Porter, “The Grave” Ellison, “King of the Bingo Game” Hawthorne, “Young Goodman Brown” Kafka, “The Hunger Artist” (packet) readings: “Symbol and Allegory” (“Reader‟s Guide”) traditional symbolic associations and archetypes in literature (packet)



Structure 1: Narrative Direction, Openings, Development instructor:

story: Adams, “Roses, Rhododendron” (packet) Faulkner, “A Rose for Emily” readings: “Plot” (“Reader‟s Guide”) “A Rose for Emily”: plot sequences (packet) “Getting into the Story” (Lohafer) “Getting through the Story” (Lohafer)



Structure 2: Endings instructor: story: Chopin, “The Storm” Jackson, “The Lottery” Glaspell, “A Jury of Her Peers” Hemingway, “In Another Country” (packet) review: Crane, “The Blue Hotel” readings: “Getting Out of the Story” (Lohafer)



Point of View and Narrative Voice (Voice and View: floating perspective, reliability, authorial intrusion, frames, etc.) instructor: story: Anderson, “I Want to Know Why” (packet) Godwin, “Dream Children” (packet) Crane, “A Mystery of Heroism” (packet) Hemingway, “Hills Like White Elephants” O‟Brien, “The Man I Killed” (+ Hardy poem “The Man He Killed”) (packet) Jewett, “A White Heron” Irving, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” (“Post Script”) Moore, “How” (packet) review: “A Rose for Emily,” “A Hunger Artist,” “The Lottery,” readings: “Point of view” (“Reader‟s Guide”)



Characterization instructor: story: Bellow, “Looking for Mr. Green”

Faulkner, “Barn Burning” Carver, “Cathedral” Beattie, "Janus" review: Kafka, "The Hunger Artist" (packet), Glaspell, “A Jury of Her Peers” Crane, “The Blue Hotel, ”Ellison, “King of the Bingo Game” readings: “Character” (“Reader‟s Guide”)



Narrative texture and rhythm: density vs. sparseness; showing vs. telling instructor: story: Gogol, “The Overcoat” Fitzgerald, “Winter Dreams” (last two pages) Hemingway, “Hills Like White Elephants” (review) James, from “The Beast in the Jungle” (packet) readings: “Style and tone” (“Reader‟s Guide”)



Historical Development From tale to story: Poe and the Single Effect; Hawthorne and the romance instructor: story: Irving, “Rip Van Winkle” Poe, “The Cask Of Amontillado” Hawthorne, “My Kinsman, Major Molineux” readings: “Historical Development of the Short Story” (“Reader‟s Guide”: 85-91) Poe, from review of Hawthorne‟s Twice-Told Tales (May) Brander Mathews, “Philosophy of the Short Story” (May) Robert Marler, “From Tale to Short Story: The Emergence of a New Genre in the 1850s” (May) Reserve: May, The Short Story: Reality of Articifice, ch. 2 (pp. 21-45)

3/15 10. 3/22

Spring Break(!) Early Realism instructor: story: Maupassant, “Rust”

James, “The Real Thing”

Chekhov, Fitzgerald and mood; instructor: story: Chekhov, “The Lady with the Dog” Fitzgerald, “Winter Dreams” readings: Chekhov, “The Short Story” (May) “Chekhov and the Short Story” (May) Reserve: The Short Story: Reality of Articifice, ch. 2 (pp. 45-56)



modernism: Joyce, Mansfield, Hemingway, etc. instructor: story: Joyce, “Araby” Mansfield, “Miss Brill” Lessing, “Wine” review: Hemingway, “Hills Like White Elephants” readings: “Short Story in the 20th Century and Beyond” („Reader‟s Guide”: 91-95) Ferguson, “Defining the Short Story Story: Impresssion and Form” (May) Baldeshwiler, “The Lyric Short Story: The Sketch of a History” (May) reserve: The Short Story: Reality of Articifice, ch. 2 (pp. 56-61); ch. 3



postmodernism 1: magic realism, metafiction instructor: story: Malamud, “The Magic Barrel” (packet) Garcia Marquez, “A Very Old Man with Wings” Barth, “Lost in the Funhouse” Borges, “The Garden of Forking Paths” readings: reserve: The Short Story: Reality of Articifice, ch. 4 (pp. 83-86)



postmodernism 2: minimalism instructor: story: Carver, “Call Me if You Need Me” review: Beattie, “Janus”

readings: Carver, “On Writing” (May) reserve: The Short Story: Reality of Articifice, ch. 5 (pp. 91-100) contextual readings story: Wright, “The Man Who Was Almost a Man” Camus, “The Guest” O‟Conner, “A Good Man is Hard to Find” readings: O‟Conner on her short stories (packet)



Cognitive approaches instructor: story: readings: Lohafer, “A Cognitive Approach to Storyness” (May) Lohafer, “Preclosure and Story Processing” (reserve: Short Story at the Crossroads) May, “The Nature of Knowledge in Short Fiction (May) Van Dijk, “Story Comprehension: An Introduction” (May)



Boundaries: tale, novella, microfiction instructor: stories: Melville, “Bartleby, the Scrivener” Conrad, “Heart of Darkness” Updike, “Oliver‟s Evolution” (packet) Hempel, “What Were the White Things?” (packet) Coover, “The Fallguy‟s Faith” (packet) Wilson, “Sweet Sixteen” (packet) readings: Mary Louis Pratt, “The Short Story: The Long and the Short of It” (May) Allan Pasco, “On Defining Short Stories” (May) Graham Good, “Notes on the Novella” (May) Editor‟s note to Flash Fiction Forward and New Sudden Fiction (packet or handout)

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