This important anthology is an exceptionally wide-ranging alphabetically arranged collection that includes writers of the 19th and 20th centuries and spans all genres of short fiction. It covers myth, fairy tale, humor, western, detective, science fiction, gothic, fantasy, and folktale. Designed to familiarize readers with major writers and differing approaches to the art of storytelling, the book also helps to familiarize readers with literary elements and demonstrate that this familiarity can be useful in understanding the dynamics of novels, films, and other genres. The book presents a range of perspectives with stories from a variety of countries as well as a significant representation of women writers. The fourth edition of Short Fiction has been revised to humanize writers by presenting them as real people doing real work. The book also now includes writing by authors who have contributed to AmericaUs literary heritage such as Benjamin Franklin, Washington Irving, and Langston Hughes as well as writings by contemporary authors such as Dorothy Allison, Bobbie Ann Mason, and John Wideman, among others. It also now includes more works by other authors including Margaret Atwood, Anton Chekov, Kate Chopin, Stephen Crane, Jamaica Kincaid, Alice Munro, Edgar Allan Poe, and Alice Walker. There is also a greater representation of stories on The Holocaust and the Vietnam War. It presents more diverse material in the RWriters on WritingS section and the latest material in the RWriting About FictionS section. An essential reference for every writer, both those who write professionally and those who write purely for the pleasure of it.