In order to extend comprehension and contextualize certain features of Smith’s aesthetic development, and potentially add to the illumination of aspects of her longer prose works, this chapter examines in detail Smith’s shorter fiction, the majority appearing in the New Yorker. Although Smith’s output of such writing is hardly prolific, their qualities and focus are perhaps unexpectedly diverse, and readers familiar with her novels may find certain of their perspectives surprising. A large proportion of these stories are not readily available. Hence the following close analysis may prove particularly useful in comprehending the full range of Smith’s themes, settings, characterizations and stylistic characteristics.
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