Daily Archives for: May 20th, 2020

“The Garden Party” by Katherine Mansfield (1920)

“The Garden Party” by Katherine Mansfield is a widely anthologized short story by the New Zealand-born master of this form of fiction. It was first published as the lead story in the collection The Garden Party and Other Stories  (1922). 

Warren S. Walker wrote in an essay on the story: ‘The most frequently anthologized of Katherine Mansfield’s works, ‘The Garden Party’ has long enjoyed a reputation for near-perfection in the art of the short story.’  In her time, Mansfield was seen as one of the prime innovators of the short story form.” Read More→

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Quotes by British Novelist Elizabeth Taylor on Love and Loneliness, Beauty and Marriage

A unique voice comes through in the following selection of quotes by British author Elizabeth Taylor (not to be confused with the actress of the same name) on love, loneliness, beauty, and marriage from her novels and short stories.

Elizabeth Taylor (1912 – 1975) knew from a young age that she wanted to be a novelist. She received high marks in English as a student and, after graduation, borrowed books through the Boots Library system which informed her natural storytelling abilities: works by of Jane Austen, Anton Chekhov, Henry Fielding, E.M. Forster, Samuel Richardson, Ivan Turgenev and Virginia Woolf.

She found inspiration for twelve novels and sixty-five short stories in the everyday lives of ordinary people. She described it like this to her American publisher: Read More→

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“Désirée’s Baby” by Kate Chopin: Motherhood and Miscegenation in 19th-Century America

This analysis of “Désirée’s Baby,” an 1893 short story by Kate Chopin, explores the narrative of miscegenation and motherhood in the antebellum American South. Chopin is best known for the groundbreaking classic novella The Awakening (1899).

Désirée, a young woman adopted as a child, is married to a plantation owner named Armaud. She is startled when she suddenly realizes that their baby is of a darker complexion than her own and her husband’s.

Chopin uses the setting of Louisiana to create a delicate yet hostile environment for a disillusioned young mother. Motherhood in this era can be deemed sensitive and complicated, since Désirée lives in a time when its treatment is based on ethnicity and social stratification. Read More→

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