Hands Discussion Questions

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Using the Oxford English Dictionary and a dictionary of literary terms, investigate meanings of the word "grotesque," especially as it is used as a noun. Learn how the meanings have changed over time. In what ways is Wing Biddlebaum a grotesque?

Look at a few paragraphs from short stories by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Edgar Allan Poe, Mark Twain, or other nineteenthcentury American writers. Compare individual sentences in these writers' works with sentences in "Hands." How do the styles compare? What new things was Anderson attempting to do with his prose?

Some early reviewers of Anderson's short stories wrote that the author was cold and distant and created characters even he did not care about. Based on "Hands," do you think this assessment is accurate?

Look closely at the passages in "Hands" where Adolph Myers' relationship with his students is described. Do you think his physical...

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This section contains 237 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Hands Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
Hands from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.