Introduction & Overview of Residents and Transients

This Study Guide consists of approximately 45 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Residents and Transients.
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Residents and Transients Summary & Study Guide Description

Residents and Transients 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 Bibliography on Residents and Transients by Bobbie Ann Mason.

Bobbie Ann Mason's short story, "Residents and Transients," initially appeared in the Boston Review, and was then included in her first collection of short stories, Shiloh and Other Stories. The book received nominations for a variety of awards and earned the Ernest Hemingway Foundation Award in 1983. While not as widely anthologized or reviewed as the title story, "Shiloh," "Residents and Transients" is an important story in the collection. Critics and readers praise the story for its tension between past and present, country and city, and childhood and adulthood.

Mason sets "Residents and Transients" in a region she is very familiar with—rural western Kentucky, the area she grew up in and the site of many of her short stories. As in her other work, she writes with a lean, spare style. Her characters speak in the cadences of western Kentucky, and often find themselves bemused by their situations.

"Residents and Transients" is the story of a woman, Mary, caught in a moment of transition. After a long absence, she has returned to live in the home of her parents who have since moved to Florida. Her husband, a salesman, is in Louisville, searching for a new house. She is supposed to sell the house and move to Louisville, but there is a part of her that wants to remain in her hometown. In addition, Mary finds herself caught between two men: her lover, Larry, and her husband Stephen.She vacillates between two different lives, unable to choose her future.

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Residents and Transients from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.