Why I Live at the P.O.
by Eudora Welty (1906-2001)

In Brief
course7-book The idea for this story came to Welty when she glimpsed a lone woman at her ironing board in the back of a small rural post office in the mid-1930's. The story, eventually published in 1941, is narrated in the first person by Sister, who tells us about a family spat—and encourages readers to take her side. Her indignation and self-pity become increasingly comic, causing readers to begin questioning her reliability as a truthful narrator. This is a very funny story! Read the selection (at Art-bin.com).

About the Author
Considered one of the finest short-story writers of the 20th century, Welty drew on her intimate knowledge of people and place in the Deep South. Born in Jackson, Miss., she attended Mississippi State College for Women and the University of Wisconsin. She published her first collection of stories in 1941 and in 1980 won the Pulitzer Prize for that year's The Collected Stories.

Within that 40-year span, Welty wrote as a literary critic for the New York Review of Books and became an accomplished photographer. She won the Pulitzer again in 1984 for The Optimist's Daughter, a novel. Her memoir, One Writer's Beginnings (1994) is a favorite among authors and students of writing.

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