After the work is completed, the old writer lies in bed and thinks about death. As he nears sleep, all the people he has ever met pass slowly before his eyes. He sees them all as "grotesques," some amusing, some terribly sad, and some horrifying.
Anderson's book was the first work of fiction to expose the hypocrisy, frustration, and inhibition behind Winesburg ohio typical small town's facade of gentility. Earlier realists, like Hamlin Garland in Main Traveled Roads especially the story "Under the Lion's Paw"had shown the harshness and brutalizing monotony of a small farm.
But, generally, Americans still had a rather romantic conception of the charm, warmth, and innocence of small-town life. Anderson, however, showed the people of Winesburg, Ohio, populationas agonizingly lonely, alienated from one another, and unable to communicate their need for love and understanding.
Longing to escape inhibiting customs and conventions, his villagers are imprisoned by society's demands and their own inability to distinguish between appearance and reality.
The typical villagers, therefore, had become what Anderson called grotesques and he intended to name his book The Book of the Grotesque. In his introduction to the book, he defines a grotesque as a person who takes one truth to himself, calls it his truth, and tries to live by it although it becomes thereby a false-hood.
What Anderson means becomes clearer as we get acquainted with his grotesques in Winesburg, for each character is in some way deformed, sometimes physically but always psychologically — a caricature of what he might have been. Anderson describes these people compassionately for, as he himself said, he was "a writer whose sympathy went out mostly to the little frame houses, on often mean enough streets in American towns, to defeated people, often with thwarted lives.
Similarly, his grotesques seem to be unusually human, interesting, even lovable in spite of their oddness. Another way in which Anderson was revolutionary was in his emphasis on the importance of sexual drives in human actions. He says of the writers in the so-called Chicago literary renaissance, "We had the notion that sex had something to do with people's lives, and it had barely been mentioned in American writing before our time.
The description of such things in fiction seemed revolutionary in Winesburg was not only revolutionary in subject matter; it was, as Anderson realized, a new form of fiction. After writing this book Anderson explained, "I have sometimes thought that the novel form does not fit an American writer.
What's wanted is a new looseness; and in Winesburg I had made my own form. Anderson himself said, "The stories belonged together.
I felt that, taken together, they made something like a novel, a complete story. First, in the Introduction, he explains the concept of the grotesque and the tales that follow are, by and large, examples of grotesquerie.
Second, all of the tales are set, at least partly, in Winesburg, Ohio. Third, the reappearance of certain characters — Doctor Reefy, Elizabeth Willard, George Willard, and Helen White, for example — in several of the stories helps to tie the stories together. Fourth, George Willard, the character who appears most often in the tales, can be seen developing in the book.
Fifth and last, the repetition of certain elements helps to hold the book together. For example, most of the incidents take place in darkness, a device which emphasizes the misery of life experienced by most of the grotesques and their inability to see the real world clearly and without distortion.
The repetition of emphasis on the hands of various characters joins the stories together and also suggests the grotesques' attempts to reach out, to touch to communicate with other people.
Sherwood Anderson was not the only writer experimenting with looser forms of fiction during this time.Winesburg, Ohio (Dover Thrift Editions) [Sherwood Anderson] on ashio-midori.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.
In this moving collection of interrelated stories, Ohio-born Sherwood Anderson () illuminates the loneliness and frustration — spiritual/5().
Winesburg is an unincorporated community in southwestern Paint Township, Holmes County, Ohio, United States. The town sits on the crest of a hill in the Amish country of Ohio, with a quaint downtown containing antique shops.
"The Book of the Grotesque," "Hands," "Paper Pills" Summary. Winesburg, Ohio begins with a prologue, describing an old writer who has hired a carpenter to rebuild his bed, so it will be level with his window. After the work is completed, the old writer lies in bed and thinks about death.
"The Book of the Grotesque," "Hands," "Paper Pills" Summary.
Winesburg, Ohio () is Sherwood Anderson's masterpiece, a cycle of short stories concerning life in a small town at the end of the nineteenth century/5(K). Winesburg is an unincorporated community in southwestern Paint Township, Holmes County, Ohio, United States. The town sits on the crest of a hill in the Amish country of Ohio, with a quaint downtown containing antique shops. Winesburg, Ohio (full title: Winesburg, Ohio: A Group of Tales of Ohio Small-Town Life) is a short story cycle by the American author Sherwood ashio-midori.com work is structured around the life of protagonist George Willard, from the time he was a child to his growing independence and ultimate abandonment of Winesburg as a young man.
Winesburg, Ohio begins with a prologue, describing an old writer who has hired a carpenter to rebuild his bed, so it will be level with his window. After the work is completed, the old writer lies in bed and thinks about death.
Winesburg, Ohio Questions and Answers. The Question and Answer section for Winesburg, Ohio is a great resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.
Before Raymond Carver, John Cheever, and Richard Ford, there was Sherwood Anderson, who, with Winesburg, Ohio, charted a new direction in American fiction—evoking with lyrical simplicity quiet moments of epiphany in the lives of ordinary men and women/5(52).