What are the details that allow you to “see” one of the scenes in this story?

Phyllis Young

Choose one of the short stories in

The Norton Introduction to Literature (other than the one by Poe or Melville) to use as a focus for answering the following questions. I will expect at least a five-six sentence paragraph for each answer to the numbered questions. Give details from the story to support your answers. Use the material in the Reader on “Writing about Literature” as you do this assignment. This assignment is due by next Wednesday.

1. What can you tell about the

narrator in this story? What effect does this narrator have on how we understand what is happening?

2. Choose one of the main

characters of this story. What can we learn about this character from the details given in the story? Does the character change from the beginning to end of the story? Is this a positive or negative character–and how do you know this from the story? Give details.

3. What role does the

setting play in this story? What can you say about how it furthers the plot

or the effect on the reader? What are the details that allow you to “see” one of the scenes in this story?

4. What is the

conflict or tension in this story, and how is it resolved by the end? Are all the reader’s questions answered or are we left wondering what happens next?

5. Poe said that short stories were to create an

effect. What is the effect of this story and how does the author create it? Be sure to provide supporting details.


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