After the funeral, and other stories

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Brendan S. McKennedy (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Holly Goddard Jones

Abstract: The four stories in this collection examine the effects on the individual of abandonment and dissolution of the family. The central effect of abandonment shared by all these characters is deep-seated anxiety. Some of these characters are more aware than others of the ways their anxieties operate in their lives and affect their decisions, but each of these characters seeks to control or to escape the anxiety--some by playing music, some through sex, some through drugs, prescribed or illegal, and some by breaking into strangers' homes or hotel rooms. In every case, the character's inability to deal with the underlying psychological causes of their anxiety sets the character up for another instance of abandonment, and further suffering. Only in the final story, "After the Funeral," does the protagonist seem finally to recognize the source of her suffering--but the character has already, in her denial, come into such a degree of danger that her triumph is ambiguous, and possibly pyrrhic.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2013
Short stories, Families
Short stories, American

Email this document to