Great Writers in Small Doses: The Short Story

Agress Fall 22

Brought to you by Odyssey

September 12, 2022 - October 17, 2022 (6 sessions)

Monday, 6:30 pm ET

Anyone who believes that short stories differ from novels only in length has never read a great short story.   During the past 13 years, this course has remained extremely popular, with some of the same great authors, but with different stories.  In this fall's course, we will enjoy works by Anton Chekhov, Henry James, James Joyce, Edith Wharton, W. Somerset Maugham, Doris Lessing, Edgar Allan Poe, Amy Tan, Isaac Bashevis Singer,  Richard Wright, and others.  Discussions will focus on character, plot, theme, setting, and atmosphere as well as historical/cultural contexts, but, above all, on artistry.


Required text: SHORT FICTION CLASSIC AND CONTEMPORARY, 6th edition, edited by Charles Bohner and Lyman Grant (available through Amazon)

September 12, 2022 - Theme: Irony

  • "Last Train to Rosemont" (to be emailed before the class; it's one page)
  • "The Story of an Hour" by Kate Chopin
  • "The Real Thing" by Henry James

September 19, 2022 - Theme: Fantasy

  • "A Worn Path" by Eudora Welty

  • "The Necklace" by Guy deMaupassant

  • "Gimpel The Fool" by Isaac Bashevis Singer

September 26, 2022 - Theme:  The Bizarre

  • "The Fall of the House of Usher" by Edgar Allen Poe
  •  "A Hunger Artist" by Franz Kafka
  • "The Birthmark" by Nathaniel Hawthorne

October 3, 2022 - Theme - Relationships  

  • "The Darling" by Anton Chekhov

  • "The Yellow Wallpaper" by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

  • "Chrysanthemums" by John Steinbeck

October 10, 2022 - Theme - Loneliness

  • "Miss Brill" by Katherine Mansfield
  • "Mrs. Mainstay's View" by Edith Wharton
  • "An Evening Meal" by Reynolds  Price

October 17, 2022 - Theme - Discrimination

  • "Dry September" by William Faulkner

  • "A Party Down at the Square" by Ralph Ellison

  •  "Babylon Revisited" by F. Scott Fitzgerald


Johns Hopkins Tuition Remission Policies

Current and retired full-time Johns Hopkins faculty and staff, as well as their spouses or domestic partners, are eligible for tuition remission. Eligibility details can be found here.

After registration, tuition remission eligibility will be confirmed by the Odyssey registrar. If eligibility cannot be confirmed, you will be required to pay full tuition for the course. Under the terms of the University’s remission program, Hopkins employees must withdraw in writing at least five working days before the first class to receive a 100% refund. No partial refunds are given to JHU employees and affiliates. All other participants should review the JHAA Event Cancellation and Refund Policy

ABOUT Lynne Agress

Lynne Agress, Ph.D., has taught at Johns Hopkins University, Smith, and Goucher Colleges, and the University of Maryland.  She was president of BWB-Business and Legal Writing, Inc. and still conducts writing and editing workshops for companies.  She is the author of THE FEMININE IRONY and WORKING WITH WORDS,  as well as numerous articles in magazines and newspapers.  For the past 10 years, she has been writing opinion pieces for THE BALTIMORE SUN.

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 Event Date
Monday, September 12, 2022
6:30pm EDT

Monday, October 17, 2022
8:30pm EDT

1-800-JHU-JHU1 (548-5481)

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Thank you for your interest in Odyssey. This course is now closed. For questions please contact or revisit the website and try something new!