Like the characters in his stories, Carver was no stranger to sorrow. Born in 1938 and raised in the Northwest, Carver was a typical blue-collar American, working odd jobs to support a wife and two daughters, doing his best to cope with the frustrations and struggles of the working-class (“Raymond Carver”). He was reputed to be self-centered, an alcoholic with violent tendencies, and ambitious to the point of sacrificing his marriage and family for the fame he sought (Yardley). Dying at the age of fifty from cancer, he lived the harsh reality of the American Dre...
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...orld, wondering what aweful thing might be lurking unseen around the corner. In “A Small, Good Thing,” Carver shows how strong Americans can be, how it is part of their nature to find a way to begin again and continue the story, which is the most beautiful kind of ending. This is what good literary fiction should do: bring a mirror up to your face so that you see who you are with clarity, without losing sight of the world beyond you.
Carver, Raymond. “A Small, Good Thing.” American Literature Volume 2. Ed. William E. Cain. New York: Pearson, 2004. 1035-1055. Print.
“Raymond Carver.” American Literature Volume 2. Ed. William E. Cain. New York: Pearson, 2004. 1035. Print.
Yardley, Johnathan. Rev. of What it Used to be Like: A Portrait of my Marriage to Raymond Carver, by Maryann Burk Carver. Thewashingtonpost.com. 16 July 2006. Web. 24 Mar. 2014.
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