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"The Egg" Sherwood Anderson

English Short Story Seminar
by Amanda DiMarco on 28 November 2012

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Transcript of "The Egg" Sherwood Anderson

Anderson Manufacturing
Company Schooling and Jobs Sherwood Anderson rarely attended school. He was kept busy helping to support his family with jobs such as, newsboy, housepainter, stable groom, ect. Sherwood was given the nickname "Jobby" because of all the jobs he took on. When Sherwood was 17, he moved to Chicago where he attended business classes at night, and became a warehouse laborer. In 1885, Sherwood enrolled in the National Guard and served in the Spanish-American war. After the war, he returned to school in Ohio for his final year of schooling at Wittenberg Academy in Springfield. Anderson's passion for literature grew not long after his Manufacturing company took off. During his free time, he wrote. On November 28th of 1912, Sherwood "left business for literature", leaving a note on Cornelias desk saying, " There is a bridge over a river with cross-ties before it. When I come to that I’ll be all right. I’ll write all day in the sun and the wind will blow through my hair." He traveled to Chicago and took a job as a copy-writer at the Taylor-Critchfield Advirtising Company, only visiting his family on weekends. Sherwood's writing style in "The Egg" is based off of personal expiriences. He plays an important role in this story being the central storyteller. Sherwood Anderson "The Egg" Genre: Short fiction and Realism. "The Egg" is based partially off of personal expiriences throughout Sherwood Anderson's life. An English teacher would assign this story to a class so that they can make observations and draw comparisons between the authors life and his stories. Time and Culture Sherwood Anderson is from the beginning of the twenieth century in northern United States. In the short story "The Egg" there are many examples of the time and culture. In "The Egg", the father raises chickens in a chicken farm. This shows the culture of Ohio in this particular time period because in the twenieth century, Ohio was a big farming state. In "The Egg", there are examples of twenieth century resources. "When he did so he blew out the light.." This brings in the understanding of the time period. It shows that they did not have electricity in their house and instead had to use candles. This understanding of time and culture helps us make connections in the reading. The Life of
Sherwood Anderson Sherwood Anderson was born into a poor family, son of Irwin and Emma Smith Anderson, on September 13, 1876 in Camden, Ohio. His family constantly moved from place to place in search of work. He later moved to Clyde, Ohio (which was a big influence for the setting of many of his works). When Anderson married Cornelia Lane in 1904, he accepted a job where he became the president of the United Factories Company. They moved to Cleveland so he could pursue his job. In 1907, Anderson thought he needed to make more money to support their growing family. He started up his own company which carried a product called "Roof-fix". By 1908 the Anderson Manufacturing Company was a success. Andersons Start to Literature Contributions to Literature Anderson began writing many poems and short stories then eventually published many novels. Andersons stories became known as giving voice to small town American individuals. Genre Theme Sherwood Anderson was part of a group in Chicago called the Chicago Group. The group included writers Carl Sandburg and Theodore Deiser. Figurative Language Figurative Language: Ex. The American passion for getting up in the world took possession of them. Bibliography "Sherwood Anderson." Sherwood Anderson. 13 Nov. 2012 <http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/shanders.htm>. "Sherwood Anderson, A Brief Biography 1876-1941." The Sherwood Anderson Foundation. 13 Nov. 2012 <http://sherwoodandersonfoundation.org/2010/02/sherwood_anderson_a_brief_biog_1.php>. "Sherwood Anderson's Biography." Sherwood Anderson. 13 Nov. 2012 <http://www.umich.edu/~eng217/student_projects/anderson/biography.htm>. Quotes "Anderson's interest in the emerging world of American industry had previously been reflected in the agrarian-industrial conflict in Winesburg, Ohio, Poor White, and many of his short stories, including 'The Egg' and 'Ohio Pagan.' [Then], however, his concern with industrialism became much more politically focused" (Esplugas) "There is something about prosperity, the hunger for it, the pretense in all these middle-class Americans, that makes the soul sick." (Esplugas) "It is possible that Anderson found his inspiration to write the strangest story in Winesburg, Ohio, 'Tandy,' in an equally strange Sologub story called 'The White Mother.' Both stories deal with a disillusioned young man gripped by a vision of the perfect woman, called by one 'Tamar' and the other 'Tandy.'" (Campbell) Theme: Ambition is a major theme in the story. The desire for his father wanting to become successful in life is gradually fading throughout the story. When his father finally realizes he is going nowhere, everything starts to go down hill. Questions What was one of Sherwood Anderson's biggest influences from his
personal life, that were incorporated into his stories? What was the genre of the short story "The Egg"? Do you think the time and culture of the short story helped you get a
better understanding of it? If so, why?
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