Introduction & Overview of Death in the Woods

This Study Guide consists of approximately 50 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Death in the Woods.
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Death in the Woods Summary & Study Guide Description

Death in the Woods Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Further Reading on Death in the Woods by Sherwood Anderson.

Sherwood Anderson published early versions of "Death in the Woods" as a sketch in A Story- Teller's Story (1924) and as a chapter in his autobiographical Tar: A Midwest Childhood (1926). He worked on "Death in the Woods" periodically for nine years before publishing it in final form as the title story in his 1933 collection Death in the Woods and Other Stories.

According to many critics, Anderson's artistic powers were waning at this point in his career; yet "Death in the Woods" stands out as a masterpiece, paralleling the brilliance of the stories collected in his best known work, Winesburg, Ohio.

"Death in the Woods" chronicles the deceptively simple story of the life and death of a poor and downtrodden farm woman. The narrator, an adolescent boy at the time of these events, observes her dead body—a formative moment in his development as a man and an artist. He puts together the pieces of her story, which takes on mystery and mythic meaning as he reflects back on it years later.

"Death in the Woods" exemplifies Anderson's pared-down writing style and brooding, bittersweet tone. The story is most notable for the stark simplicity of its subject matter and the contrasting intricacy of its self-conscious narration.

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This section contains 205 words
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Short Stories for Students
Death in the Woods from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.