An analysis of the published short fiction of Harold Frederic

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dc.contributor.advisor Foster, Edward F. en_US Dille, Ralph G. (Ralph Guy), 1926- en_US 2011-06-03T19:24:53Z 2011-06-03T19:24:53Z 1976 en_US 1976
dc.identifier LD2489.Z64 1976 .D54 en_US
dc.description.abstract The purpose of this study was to present an analysis of the corpus of Harold Frederic's short fiction published between 1876 and 1898. A search of Frederic criticism revealed that little interest had been shown in this short fiction. Few of Frederic's tales had been analyzed or commented upon. In addition, no study considered the entire body of twenty-five stories and novellas. A review of dissertations concerning Frederic's works disclosed that, except for two studies, scholarly attention had been focused entirely upon Frederic's novels. The two studies which included selected short works associated this fiction with Frederic's efforts as a novelist. This study analyzed all of Harold Frederic's published short fiction, identifying themes, literary techniques, and subject matter developed by him.The works were considered chronologically and placed into three groups. Each group spanned approximately six years beginning with 1876. A 'brief summary of each story was given including plot development, major characters, artistic devices and techniques, themes, and characteristics of Frederic's writing. Each group of stories was then summarized, and the short fiction was compared with traditional literary classifications of realism, naturalism, local color, and romanticism.The majority of Frederic's stories was written in a realistic manner. Frederic's descriptions of setting, his dialogue techniques, and his character depictions placed his stories in the tradition of literary naturalism. But his plot development, presenting optimistic points of view, was in the romantic tradition. Hence, Frederic's short fiction was fundamentally in the tradition of literary romanticism.This study revealed Frederic's development as a writer of fiction. His early characters were stereotyped; his later characters were individualized. Early stories concerned landedgentry and other idyllic characters; later tales developed believable and memorable, naive, middle-class characters.This analysis showed that the settings in Frederic's tales became more distinctive. His early tales were set in conventional fictional areas. In the later stories, Frederic created his own characteristic fictional areas of the Dunmanus Bay for his Irish allegories and of Dearborn County in York State for his Mohawk Valley stories.The analysis also revealed that Frederic modified his use of artistic devices. Frederic reduced the span of time in his an evening. Also, he reduced his early, lengthy, descriptive passages, full of alliteration, consonance, and assonance, to carefully detailed descriptions of locales, battles, buildings, characters, and climate in his later work. In addition, Frederic mastered the use of historically accurate details and specific places, which gave believability to his stories.The study showed that, as Frederic developed as a writer of short fiction, his plots became less complicated and that he regularly employed the youthful naive-narrator as a frame for his characteristic frame-story technique. Also, Frederic used humor in his fiction, changing the early humor directed toward a character to the more subtle humor of name imagery and character development.The analysis indicated that Frederic's early tales were simply narratives, but that his later writings developed to include allegorical and symbolic tales concerned with individualism, home rule in Ireland, and the triumph of romance over realism. Other recurrent themes included the triumph of good over evil; the virtues of hard work, truth, innocence, loyalty, faithfulness, and honor; and the vices of vanity, treachery, dishonor, unfaithfulness, avarice, and usury.The analysis showed that, in his short fiction, Frederic developed a set of moral, social, and political standards which were appropriate to his era and to his contemporary reading public. en_US
dc.format.extent ii, 190 leaves ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.other Frederic, Harold, 1856-1898. en_US
dc.title An analysis of the published short fiction of Harold Frederic en_US Thesis (D. Ed.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3248]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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