Death in the Woods Essay

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In the following essay, Colquitt examines Anderson's belief that art is a means for a man to find personal salvation whereas women find their destiny through childbirth.

Like most writers, Sherwood Anderson was vitally concerned with the workings of the imagination and the creation of art. For Anderson, these concerns were also inextricably linked to questions of personal salvation. In letters to his son John, himself a painter, Anderson asserted that "The object of art . . . is to save yourself": "Self is the grand disease. It is what we are all trying to lose" (Letters). Given Anderson's faith in the redemptive possibilities of art, it is not surprising that the writer frequently compared "literary [and nonliterary] composition to the experience of pregnancy and deliverance, and also to the poles of maleness and femaleness in life" (Letters). One letter composed three years before the author's death well illustrates Anderson's understanding...

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This section contains 6,964 words
(approx. 18 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Death in the Woods Study Guide
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Death in the Woods from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.