Short Stories 2

Here are some other short stories that I enjoy teaching. Some have links to where to find them online; others have word documents with tasks on that you can download.

The Birthmark by Nathaniel Hawthorne

A story about scientific hubris and the dangers of pursuing unattainable perfection, The Birthmark explores questions about beauty as well as the conflict between science and nature. It is a good text to pair with Jekyll and Hyde.

The Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allen Poe

Can we avoid death? Prince Prospero walls himself off from the Red Death that has devastated his country and lives a life of celebration and decadence. His castle contains a series of symbolically decorated rooms alluding to mortality. As the guests dance on, the clock slowly ticks.

Shooting an Elephant by George Orwell

Orwell’s account of an event he witnessed when posted in Burma is an exploration of the absurdity of colonial power.

War by Jack London

An unnamed soldier rides through a hostile landscape, constantly on the look out for danger. War drips with tension and suspense as the young man strives to stay alive. This short story is great for practising commenting on structure.

An Occurence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce

Set during the American Civil War, this short story has an interesting narrative structure as well as a good twist at the end.

The Necklace by Guy De Maupassant

This story explores the harmful effects of social climbing and the desire for acknowledgement.

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

A man with a low IQ is given a powerful nootropic and it changes his life.

There Will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury

In a post-apocalytpic future, a lone house remains.

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