Thesis Title

Chiaroscuro

Date of Graduation

Spring 2009

Degree

Master of Arts in English

Department

English

Committee Chair

Wayne Blackmon

Keywords

fiction, stories, entertainment, vivid and continuous dream

Subject Categories

English Language and Literature

Abstract

The following collection of stories represents an experiment in physical lyricism and secular humanism, a style of writing perfected by Ivan Bunin, the first Russian to win the Nobel Prize for Literature. Chiaroscuro has also been influenced by other writers and styles, most notably Anton Chekov, Isaac Babel, Henry James, Ernest Hemingway, and Raymond Carver. In particular, Carver's prose style catapulted minimalism to the level of art, and often dealt with difficult issues in a third-person, object-heavy narrative. There are four stories in the collection: "The Lexicon of the Sword" (fencing and child molestation in twenty-first century Los Angeles); "The Emperor Norton" (journalism and tourism in nineteenth-century San Francisco); "The Surgeon" (humanity and revolution in a small Spanish-speaking island nation); and "The Artist" (oil painting and social interaction between different generations and expatriates in Boston).

Copyright

© Benjamin Paul Pfeiffer

Campus Only

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