Short Story Theories

A Twenty-First-Century Perspective


Editor: Viorica Patea
Short Story Theories: A Twenty-First-Century Perspective problematizes different aspects of the renewal and development of the short story. The aim of this collection is to explore the most recent theoretical issues raised by the short story as a genre and to offer theoretical and practical perspectives on the form. Centering as it does on specific authors and on the wider implications of short story poetics, this collection presents a new series of essays that both reinterpret canonical writers of the genre and advance new critical insights on the most recent trends and contemporary authors. Theorizations about genre reflect on different aspects of the short story from a multiplicity of perspectives and take the form of historical and aesthetic considerations, gender-centered accounts, and examinations that attend to reader-response theory, cognitive patterns, sociolinguistics, discourse analysis, postcolonial studies, postmodern techniques, and contemporary uses of minimalist forms. Looking ahead, this collection traces the evolution of the short story from Chaucer through the Romantic writings of Poe to the postmodern developments and into the twenty-first century.
This volume will prove of interest to scholars and graduate students working in the fields of the short story and of literature in general. In addition, the readability and analytical transparence of these essays make them accessible to a more general readership interested in fiction.
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Biographical Note

Viorica Patea is Associate Professor of English and American Literature at the University of Salamanca. She is co-editor of Critical Essays on the Myth of the American Adam (2001) and Modernism Revisited: Transgressing Boundaries and Strategies of Renewal in American Poetry (2007). She is author of a book on the poetry of Sylvia Plath, Entre el mito y la realidad: Aproximación a la obra poética de Sylvia Plath (1989); a study on T.S. Eliot’s The Waste Land (2000); and essays on Ezra Pound, Emily Dickinson, E.A. Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Walt Whitman, etc. In addition, she has published studies in comparative literature in the area of witness literature of East-European countries and has edited, translated and analyzed the works of Nicolae Steinhardt (2007) and Ana Blandiana (2008, 2011).

Review Quotes

Short Story Theories has been awarded the Javier Coy Biennial Research Awards 2013 for best edited volume. The goal of these awards is to promote high-quality scholarship in the field of American Studies, and to celebrate the originality and excellence of research carried out within SAAS. -

“Viorica Patea, the editor of Short Story Theories - a Twenty-First Century Perspective, is to be congratulated. Any book that brings together renowned academic specialists in the genre, such as Charles May, author of seminal works like The Short Story: The Reality of Artifice, and editor of Short Story Theories and New Short Story Theories, or post-modern specialist, Farhat Iftekharuddin, with a range of talented scholars mostly working in Spain, is bound to be of interest to scholars specialising in narrative. […]It is a recommendable addition to any short-story specialists’ library.”
– John Style (Universidad Rovira I Virgili), in miscelánea: a journal of english and american studies 48, 2013, pp. 149-153

Table of contents

The Beginnings of the Short Story and the Legacy of Poe
Viorica Patea: The Short Story: An Overview of the History and Evolution of the Genre
Antonio López Santos: The Paratactic Structure in the Canterbury Tales: Two Antecedents of the Modern Short Story
Peter Gibian: Anticipating Aestheticism: The Dynamics of Reading and Reception in Poe
Erik Van Achter: Revising Theory: Poe’s Legacy in Short Story Criticism
The Linguistic Turn: Discourse Analysis, Cognitive Theories and Pragmatism
Per Winther: Frames Speaking: Malamud, Silko, and the Reader
Pilar Alonso: A Cognitive Approach to Short Story Writing
Consuelo Montes-Granado: Code-Switching as a Strategy of Brevity in Sandra Cisneros’ Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories
Borders, Postcolonialism, Orality, and Gender
Carolina Núñez-Puente: The Yellow Hybrids: Gender and Genre in Gilman’s Wallpaper
Rebeca Hernández: Short Narrations in a Letter Frame: Cases of Genre Hybridity in Postcolonial Literature in Portuguese
María Jesús Hernáez Lerena: Short-Storyness and Eyewitnessing
Teresa Gibert: Margaret Atwood’s Art of Brevity: Metaphorical Conceptualization and Short Story Writing
Farhat Iftekharuddin: Body Politics: Female Dynamics in Isabel Allende’s The Stories of Eva Luna
Postmodernism and the Twenty-first Century: Intertextuality, Minifiction, Serial Narration
Luisa María González Rodríguez: Intertextuality and Collage in Barthelme’s Short Fiction
Santiago Rodríguez Guerrero-Strachan: Realism and Narrators in Tobias Wolff’s Short Stories
Lauro Zavala: The Boundaries of Serial Narrative
Charles May: The American Short Story in the Twenty-first Century
Notes on Contributors


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