Archive for January, 2005

It’s all about victimization. Boudinot manages to explore different roles that people had in the Holocaust in this story: victim, victimizer, and those so scared of becoming victims that they do nothing. It’s ironic, though rather satisfying, to think of a tiny Hitler being picked on. The idea of Adolf Hitler, who is such a […]


I thought that I would never read another piece of literature written by Sherman Alexie after the disaster that was FYE and Smoke Signals, but I’m glad that I surprised myself and read this essay because it’s quite good. My favorite sentence: The Lewis and Clark expedition was exactly the kind of multicultural, trigenerational, bigendered, […]


I tried to read Jonathan Safran Foer’s Everything Is Illuminated, it being a best seller and all, a couple years ago. I think I only made it to page 50 when slogging through the abstruseness became too tiring. But I really enjoyed this essay. Ostensibly the essay begins with attempting to simplify writing dialogue, assigning […]


With the relationship of the narrator to the blind man, Carver seems to be exploring notions of reality as defined by material things. When Robert asks the narrator to tell him about cathedrals, the narrator is at a loss. He tries telling Robert the facts that he has learned from watching the special that is […]


Before I begin, the episode in this story of the girls “burn[ing] one of Lucy’s used sanitary napkins”…. Ewwwwww! See, this is why I would make a terrible Wiccan. Anyway, “Death by Landscape.” In this short story, Atwood explores the importance of storytelling and how it shapes reality. Cappie’s “Indian” ritual that precedes the fateful […]


Death is the antagonist. Not a particularly novel concept, but such is the case in this essay: But, as I stretched out a pencil, meaning to help him to right himself, it came over me that the failure and awkwardness were the approach of death. I laid the pencil down again. The legs agitated themselves […]


Geez, this is going to bug me! I’ve read this story before, but I don’t remember in what context. Obvious reading: a woman free from man’s influence finally experiences a sense of true freedom and the harsh retraction of that freedom, and prospect of returning to an oppressive lifestyle, leads to the most drastic rebellion, […]


I don’t remember how old I was when I first read “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge”—I think I was 13 or so—but it was one of the first “serious” short stories that I read and really enjoyed. Bierce’s irony, manipulation of the reader, and exploration of human self-deception create a truly unique storytelling experience. […]


Perhaps I am looking for homoeroticism in all the wrong places, but I thought that this story kind of suggested it. The relationship between the husband and his “friend” seemed a little, well, friendly for them to be just friends. The wife suspects the friend to be of questionable character, and while he did commit […]


This story is so richly and beautifully descriptive. Woolf seems to observe with the eyes of someone who has never experienced the mundane realities of life. She writes: The petals were voluminous enough to be stirred by the summer breeze, and when they moved, their red, blue and yellow lights passed one over the other, […]