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American Short Stories Research: Start here!

A guide to finding literary criticism, biographical and background information, other resources and citation help.


If you need to research short stories by American authors, you've come to the right place. This guide will help you with your research and citations.

First, carefully read and reread your assignment.

 Be sure you understand the assignment and the sources you are required to use!

Literary Criticism

  • Literary criticism is the description, interpretation, and analysis of a novel, poem, story, or other written work, or of a group of works as a whole.

  • Keep in mind, it is not always possible to find critical articles that discuss every novel, short story, play or poem by every writer, even in the case of major writers. When an individual work is not analyzed, researchers need to look for criticism that discusses the author's theme and style in general and apply the overall interpretation to the literary work in question.