The Summer People, By Shirley Jackson And Smoke Ghost By Fritz Leiber

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QUESTION 3 The assertion that all works by weird fiction authors are simply “ridiculous flights of fancy wholly detached from ‘real world’ issues and problems” is completely false. I could choose almost any example from our readings and pick out some sort of “real world” issue or important thing that I have learned from them. For the sake of time, however, I will focus on “The Yellow Wallpaper” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Summer People” by Shirley Jackson and “Smoke Ghost” by Fritz Leiber. Each of these stories has succeeded in broadening my horizons and has taught me something important about the world in which we live. Weird fiction stories cover a wide range of important issues including sexism, the social structure of tourist towns and the disparity of the working class. In the introduction to the book Weird Fiction by S. T. Joshi, different aspects of the weird tale are examined. Joshi states that “the weird tale…did not (and perhaps does not now) exist as a genre but as the consequence of a world view” (1). This quote refers to the fact that weird literature stems from a desire to display a certain view of the world to readers, not just take them on a flight of detached fancy. Another point that Joshi makes about weird literature, is seen through a quote on the last page of his introduction, “In every case we shall see that each writers entire output is a philosophical unity, changing as the author’s conception of the world changes”

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