Short Fiction and Discussion

A. The Readings FROM– The Story and Its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction Compact 9th Edition by Ann Charters ISBN-10: 1457665557 ISBN-13: 978-1457665554Raymond Carver’s biography and story, “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love”, bio p. 104, story pg. 132Junot Diaz’s biography and story, “How to Date a Browngirl, Blackgirl, Whitegirl, or Halfie,” pg. 277Russell Banks’ biography and story, “Black Man and White Woman in Dark Green Rowboat,” pg. 62Lydia Davis’ biography and Story, “Blind Date” p. 272Ernest Hemingway’s biography and story, “Hills Like White Elephants,” pg. 416For the Section 2 Discussion Board, I would like you to go back to the pdf on Character in the Section 1 folder. After you have reacquainted yourself with the terminology discussed there, I would like you to write an analysis of the characters found in three of the stories we have read in this section. Are they flat or round? Stock characters, foils, or sterotypes?Once you have identified the characters and explained the reasoning behind your decisions, I would then like you to consider the authors’ style of characterization. Do they use direct or indirect styles of characterization? Both? Please give properly cited examples from the text to provide evidence for your choices.If you are having trouble discerning between direct and indirect characterization, please also see the discussion of “Levels of Meaning” in the pdf on Style in Section 1. Denotationis when information is given directly. An example would be if an author told us, “Bill had a terrible temper”. Connotation is when the information is implied or revealed indirectly. An example would be if an author provided a scene where we saw Bill stub his toe and everyone around him suddenly went silent and stepped back nervously, implying to the audience that Bill had a bad temper but not telling us directly.To get you started, try to consider what the diction, syntax, and dialect of Diaz’s narrator in “How to Date a Browngirl, Blackgirl, Whitegirl, or Halfie”, tells us about his character. The manner in which his narrator speaks to us implies so much about the character that then does not have to be explained directly.You should use at least a paragraph for each story to complete this assignment, and please remember to first turn in your post to the Discussion Board Pre Post Dropboxwhere it will be checked for originality and plagiarism.Please do discussion post and attached quiz. Follow perfectly and answers quiz correctly.


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Quiz on Diaz’s biography and story, “How to Date a
Browngirl, Blackgirl, Whitegirl, or Halfie”.

Which of the girls is the ‘easiest’ according to the narrator?
A. The ‘Whitegirl’
B. The
girl from the neighborhood
C. The
D. The
Who might best be considered the antagonist of the story?
A. The protagonist’s mother
B. The
C. Howie
D. The
protagonist’s older brother
What TWO of the following things does the narrator say to hide before any of the girls arrive?
A. Embarrassing childhood toys
B. Government
C. Dirty laundry
D. Embarrassing
family photos
According to Diaz’s bio, which TWO of the following did he want most out of his family’s move
to the United States?
A. Wealth
B. Freedom
C. Television
D. Nike
E. McDonald’s
According to Diaz’s biography, what country is Diaz originally from?
A. United States
B. Mexico
C. Puerto
D. Dominican
Which are the girls that the protagonist wants the most?
A. ‘Browngirls’
B. ‘Whitegirls’
C. ‘Halfies’
D. ‘Blackgirls’
If the girl’s from ‘around the way’ where should she be taken to dinner?
A. Taco Bell
B. Wendy’s
C. El
D. McDonald’s
As stated in Diaz’s biography, what is the title of the collection of short stories that Diaz
published, including “How to Date a Browngirl, Blackgirl, Whitegirl, or Halfie”?
A. Drown
B. The
Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
C. Catcher
D. Santo
in the Rye
Why don’t the girls’ parents want them seeing boys from the Terrace?
A. All of these are reasons why the parents in the story would not want their daughters
seeing boys from the Terrace.
B. Because they have stereotypes about the type of people who live in the Terrace
C. Because
people get stabbed in the Terrace
D. Because
the Terrace is a housing project
What does the narrator in Diaz’s story do to avoid visiting his aunt at the beginning of the story?
A. He pretends that he is sick
B. He
says he has to work
C. He
gets in a fight
D. He
runs away
Quiz on Hemingway’s biography and story, “Hills Like
White Elephants”.
What war did Hemingway serve in?
A. Iraq
B. Korea
C. World
War II
D. Vietnam
E. World
War I
What is the name of the river that the characters look upon in “Hills Like White Elephants”?
A. Mississippi
B. Nile
C. Rhine
D. Ebro
Which of the following is NOT a book written by Ernest Hemingway?
A. In Our Time
B. The
Old Man and The Sea
C. Love
D. A
in the Time of Cholera
Farewell To Arms
E. The
Sun Also Rises
Where did Hemingway go to college?
A. He didn’t go to college.
B. Harvard
D. Stanford
Which of the following best describes Hemingway’s principle of the ice burg?
A. A story should be like an ice burg in that it is a frozen solid mass that must be chipped
away at by the reader to get to the hidden meaning.
B. A story should be like an ice burg in that it gradually drifts off and melts in the sea of the
reader’s mind.
C. A
story should be like an ice burg in that it has the power to bring down a ship as mighty
as the Titanic.
D. A story should be like an ice burg in that seven-eighths of it exists underwater, meaning
that much is left to the imagination of the reader.
Which TWO of the following writers were noted as influences of Hemingway’s writing?
A. Gertrude Stein
B. Sherwood
C. William
D. James
How many drinks does the male character order in “Hills Like White Elephants”?
A. 2
B. 4
C. 3
D. 1
E. 5
“Hills Like White Elephants” is set in which of the following countries?
A. Spain
B. Germany
C. Mexico
D. United
E. France
What is the couple in the story, “Hills Like White Elephants”, arguing over?
A. An affair.
B. An
operation, most likely an abortion.
C. Who
will cover the bar tab.
D. Where
they will go next on the train.
After serving in the war, what city did Hemingway settle in and later chronicle in his memoir “A
Moveable Feast”?
A. Los Angeles
B. Paris
C. New
D. Berlin
CHARACTER: who the story ‘happens’ to—there is usually one central character who
dominates the story; however, all characters should be credible. In other words, the
characters must have recognizable human traits.
Characterization: the creation of imaginary persons so that they seem lifelike.
E.M. Forster’s Types of Characters:
ROUND CHARACTERS: characters that recognize, change with, and adjust to
circumstances. Complex and many-sided, they touch life at many points. The round
character, usually the main figure in a story, profits from experience, is altered by
circumstances, and undergoes a change or alteration, which may be shown in action, the
realization of a new strength and therefore the affirmation of previous decisions, the
acceptance of a new condition, or the discovery of heretofore unrecognized truths.
Round (or dynamic/changing) characters generally fall into one of two categories:
1. Protagonist: the major or central character – central to the action – moves against an
antagonist and exhibits ability to adapt to new circumstances.
2. Antagonist: any force in a story that is in conflict with the protagonist. An antagonist
may be another person, an aspect of the physical or social environment, or a destructive
element in the protagonist’s own nature…the thing against whom the protagonist
struggles or contends.
FLAT CHARACTERS: flat characters embody or represent a single characteristic,
trait, or idea, or at least a small number of such qualities; they are not developed.
Flat (or Static/Unchanging) characters usually fall into one of two categories:
1. Stock [Foil] Character: a flat character in a standard role with standard traits, such as
the irate police captain, the bored hotel clerk, the overbearing mother, the angry young
man, as one whose nature is familiar to us from prototypes in previous fiction. A ‘foil’ is
a minor character used for contrast to the main character.
2. Stereotype: a character who is so ordinary and unoriginal that he/she seems to have
been cast in a mold, a representative character, a character possessing no attributes except
those of his/her class.
Authors may present character traits
in the following ways:
Direct Presentation: the author uses simple description to
reveal character—works best with flat characters that are
secondary in the total structure of the story…but authors also
choose character names directly!
Indirect Presentation: uses dialogue and action to reveal
• One of the most important ways for a character to reveal him
or herself is by the way s/he talks. Mode of speech can reveal
if a character is shy, educated, boastful, arrogant, or any other
trait the author wants to reveal.
• The way other characters react to the main character is also a
significant method of characterizing (both the speaker—and
the person s/he is speaking about).
• Another means of developing character is by the way the
character looks or the way s/he dresses. If a character is
described as having on a well-tailored hand-made suit, we
can safely assume s/he is a person of some means.
• The author may also use a physical defect such as a limp, a
tic, or a scar to reveal aspects of the character.

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