Variable Topics in Comparative Literature: The American Short Story

COM LIT XL 191W

An advanced exploration of American short stories from their beginnings through the twentieth century, tracing distinctive American themes and values. This course will include the works of authors Edgar Allan Poe, Charlotte Gilman Perkins, Edith Wharton, Jean Toomer, Ernest Hemingway, and Eudora Welty.  

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What you can learn.

  • Address topics and issues each short story raises
  • Establish the relevance of a short story’s themes to the story’s author
  • Ponder the relevance of themes to your own life
  • Master techniques related to coherent, persuasive written literary analysis

About this course:

A focused look at American short stories from their beginnings through the twentieth century, tracing distinctive American themes and values. Authors include Edgar Allan Poe, Charlotte Gilman Perkins, Edith Wharton, Jean Toomer, Ernest Hemingway, Eudora Welty, Bernard Malamud, Shirley Jackson, Donald Barthelme, Raymond Carver, and Tobias Wolff. The works of these authors reveal the complex, often conflicting contours of American literary and cultural life—stories situated in regional, ethnic, and racial communities—and stories about telling stories.

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