Uniquely capable of capturing a moment in time, the short story occupies a cherished place in the history of American literature. During the last 200 years, some of this nation’s greatest writers have produced outstanding examples of this art form, many of which are included in this collection.
Beginning with well-known stories by Hawthorne, Melville, and Poe, this diverse and colorful collection includes tales by Mark Twain, Ambrose Bierce, Sherwood Anderson, Henry James, Edith Wharton, Willa Cather, Stephen Crane, and Mary Wilkins Freeman. From Sarah Orne Jewett’s portraits of rural Maine to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s brilliant tales from the Jazz Age, these stories span the breadth of the American experience. In addition to acknowledged masters of the short story form, such as O. Henry, Jack London, and Ernest Hemingway, this volume features stories by Charles W. Chesnutt, the first important African-American novelist, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman, a leading theorist of the early women’s movement.
Corinne Demas is Professor of English at Mount Holyoke College and a fiction editor of the Massachusetts Review. She has a Ph.D. in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University. She is the author of two collections of short stories, two novels, a memoir, and numerous books for children.