Sherwood Anderson Reading

SKIP–‘Godliness’–‘A Man of Ideas’–‘Tandy’–‘Queer’ Read the rest of the book and post answers to the following: 1. Anderson outlines his main idea in the preface, ‘The Book of the Grotesque.’ In your words, discuss his concept of the ‘grotesque’. 2. ‘Hands’ is a wonderful story. What is the problem with Wing? Why does he try to communicate with George? What is Anderson’s view of the isolated individual and the ‘masses’ of the town? 3. In ‘Paper Pills’, how does Dr. Reefy resemble the imperfect apples and what are we to understand of this? What is the main point of this story? 4. ‘Mother’ is a story about communication. What do we learn about George’s relationship with his mother and father? Is there a break through in communication between George and his mother or not? Explain. 5. In ‘The Philosopher’, why does Dr. Parcival feel the need to be crucified? 6. ‘Nobody Knows’ is about George Willard’s first sexual experience. What do we find out about Louise Trunnion and how do we feel about her? What does this experience mean to George? Has he changed at the end? What are we to make of the voice at the end of the story? 7. In ‘Adventure’ we have the story of Alice Hindman. What makes her such a lonely woman? Explain the meaning of her little adventure. 8. I’m not sure I total understand ‘Respectability’, although I like it very much. What do you think the point of the story is? 9. In the ‘Strength of God’ what is bothering the Rev. Curtis Hartman? What is wrong with Kate Swift? How do both their stories converge on the life of George Willard? 10. “The Untold Lie’ is another classic story. What is the crisis of Ray Pearson? Why does he try to warn Hal Winters? In the end, what does Ray accept? Is he happy or sad? 11. Judging from the last stories, do you think George is doomed to become a grotesque? Why? 12. What is your general opinion about this book?

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