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Litertary Examples of Life in a Small Town

            The texts from the first few weeks of class have painted the picture, using different themes, of what makes a modern text. The theme that really stood out to me was the idea of small town life and what it meant to be a small town in a modern composition. These ideas were easily identifiable in "Hands" and "Spoon River Anthology." Also, comparing "Hands" and "Spoon River Anthology" to the painting by Norman Rockwell "Freedom from Want," will help to develop the idea of the modern small town. "Hands" by Anderson depicts the small town as being unaccepting and judgmental. This view is illustrated in both small towns that are settings for the short work. The town in Pennsylvania ran Adolph away on the assumption that he was a pedophile. .
             The town of Winesburg found Wing to be a creepy, secluded, old man; therefore they ostracized him from the rest of society. The modern idea of yearning is squandered in this story by the people of the small towns. They were too unaccepting to allow for freedom in general that is so yearned for by Wing. Anderson therefore creates the idea of a modern small town text as one where your successes and failures are completely dependent on the people around you. This idea plays into what Masters' was alluding to with "Spoon River Anthology." The fear of judgment and being criticized was a central motivator for the characters of Spoon River. Fear and judgment are common characteristics of the both small towns. The characters waited to reveal great truths or secrets until after death. These ordinary people were lost in the shuffle of this small town, yet they were afraid of the criticism because they were different. Death is the ultimatum that brings out the truth from these people. Masters has a very modern message with this work that death holds all of the answers. .
             This idea can be contrasted with what I think is a less contemporary view of the small town.

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