Death in the Woods Essay

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In this essay, Scheick looks at the role of the narrator in Anderson's "Death in the Woods," specifically the attempt to gain mastery over an unpleasant situation through a compulsion toward repetition in describing the situation, in this case the old woman's death.

In spite of its generally recognized excellence, "Death in the Woods" has frequently escaped careful study. It has been read as a story presenting death as inevitable though not terrible, concerning the pathos of a woman's life and the narrator's response to her death, and focusing on the narrator's enlarged consciousness of the human condition. More perceptive is a recent emphasis on the old woman's representation of the Demeter-Proserpine- Hecate trilogy and on four transformations that occur in the account. Most valuable are two essays concentrating on Sherwood Anderson's notions about art as revealed in the story. None of these studies focuses on the narrator...

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This section contains 2,477 words
(approx. 7 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.