American Short Fiction Reading List

Since someone asked in a comment, here’s what was on the reading list for my “American Short Fiction” syllabus for the summer term (sans theoretical texts except for Poe) – I left off the “Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” and chose one of Poe’s ‘tales of ratiocination’ instead of a ‘tale of effect’ as most students had already encountered OCB and a ‘tale of effect’ in their “Introduction to Literature”.

Kate Chopin, “The Story of an Hour” (1894)
Robert Coover, “A Sudden Story” (1986)
Edgar Allan Poe, “The Purloined Letter” (1844)
–. “The Philosophy of Composition” (1846)
–. “Review of Hawthorne’s Twice-Told Tales” (1842)
Herman Melville, “Bartleby, the Scrivener” (1853)
Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Yellow Wallpaper” (1892)
Ernest Hemingway, “Hills Like White Elephants” (1927)
Ernest Hemingway, “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” (1933)
William Faulkner, “A Rose for Emily” (1930)
John Steinbeck, “The Chrysanthemums” (1938)
Raymond Carver, “A Small, Good Thing” (1983)
John Cheever, “The World of Apples” (1973)
Joyce Carol Oates, “Where are you going, where have you been?” (1966)




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