Places Summaries

Places: The Suppliants

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First produced: Hiketides, 463 b.c.e.? (English translation, 1777) Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: Antiquity Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Argos *Argos. Suppliants, TheAncient Greek town in the eastern Peloponnese, three miles inland from the sea. Historically hostile to Sparta, Argos is allied with the great Greek […]

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Places: The Sunlight Dialogues

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1972 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: Mid-1960’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Batavia *Batavia Sunlight Dialogues, The (ba-TAY-vee-uh). Large town in western New York, near the Great Lakes. Author John Gardner was born in Batavia and spent most of his youth there. His […]

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Places: The Sunken Bell

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1896 as Die versunkene Glocke (English translation, 1898) First produced: 1896 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Fantasy Time of work: Indeterminate Places Discussed Mountains Mountains. Sunken Bell, TheWilderness regions, untamed by human culture, where the supernatural still holds sway. Mountains have a dual symbolism in The Sunken Bell, as they also […]

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Places: The Sun Also Rises

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1926 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: 1920’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Paris *Paris. Sun Also Rises, TheFrench capital, in which the novel opens. There, American newspaperman Jake Barnes lives and works in the midst of a community of American and British expatriates […]

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Places: Sula

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1973 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: 1919-1965 Places Discussed Medallion Medallion. SulaImaginary Ohio town in which the main action of the novel is set. Morrison grew up in the small town of Lorain, Ohio. Bordered by Kentucky to the south but a Northern state in the […]

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Places: Suddenly Last Summer

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1958 First produced: 1958 (with Something Unspoken, under the collective title Garden District), at the York Theatre, New York City Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: 1936 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *New Orleans *New Suddenly Last SummerOrleans. Louisiana city at the mouth of […]

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Places: A Study in Scarlet

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1887 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Detective and mystery Time of work: Nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Afghanistan *Afghanistan. Study in Scarlet, ASouthwest Asian country over whose control Great Britain and Russia clashed in the nineteenth century and in which the novel’s narrator, Dr. John Watson, […]

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Places: Studs Lonigan

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1935: Young Lonigan: A Boyhood in Chicago Streets, 1932; The Young Manhood of Studs Lonigan, 1934; Judgment Day, 1935 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Naturalism Time of work: 1916-1931 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Chicago *Chicago. Studs LoniganCity of the street tough Studs Lonigan’s birth, youth, and eventual […]

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Places: A Streetcar Named Desire

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1947 First produced: 1947 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: Late 1940’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *New Orleans *New Streetcar Named Desire, AOrleans. Louisiana city in which the Kowalskis live adds to the tensions inside the apartment. New Orleans just after World War II […]

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Places: Street Scene

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1929 First produced: 1929 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: 1929 Places Discussed Manhattan apartment building Manhattan Street Sceneapartment building. Ordinary brownstone tenement, crowded with roughly a dozen families in New York City’s Manhattan borough. Although the stage directions indicate the geographic location only as “a mean […]

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Places: Stranger in a Strange Land

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1961 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Science fiction Time of work: Early twenty-first century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Mars *Mars. Stranger in a Strange LandFourth planet from the Sun and the birthplace of Valentine Michael “Mike” Smith, the title character and only survivor of the first human […]

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Places: The Stranger

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: L’Étranger, 1942 (English translation, 1946) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Existentialism Time of work: Late 1930’s to early 1940’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Algiers *Algiers. Stranger, TheCoastal capital of Algeria, a country in North Africa. Although not specifically described, Algiers serves as a general backdrop not only […]

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Places: Strange Interlude

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1928 First produced: 1928 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: After World War I Places Discussed Leeds home Leeds Strange Interludehome. New England home in which the first two acts are set. The location suggests the domination of Nina’s puritanical father over her adolescence, and his priggishness […]

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Places: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1886 Type of work: Novella Type of plot: Gothic Time of work: Nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *London *London. Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, TheGreat Britain’s capital and leading city is the general setting for the novella. The story depends for its effect on a […]

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Places: The Story of Gösta Berling

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Gösta Berlings Saga, 1891 (English translation, 1898) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Picaresque Time of work: Early nineteenth century Places Discussed Ekeby Ekeby Story of Gösta Berling, The (EH-keh-BIH). Swedish estate around which the novel is centered. Initially a prosperous estate, it declines nearly to the point of ruin because of […]

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Places: The Story of Burnt Njal

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First transcribed: Njáls Saga, thirteenth century (English translation, 1861) Type of work: Fiction Type of plot: Adventure Time of work: Tenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Iceland *Iceland. Story of Burnt Njal, TheNorth Atlantic island on whose southwestern corner most of events of the saga take place. Between the mountain ridges, […]

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Places: The Story of an African Farm

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1883 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: 1880’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Karroo *Karroo. Story of an African Farm, TheArid, dusty plateau of the southwestern part of what is now the Republic of South Africa and the interior of what was the British […]

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Places: Steps

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1968 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Existentialism Time of work: Indeterminate Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Central Europe *Central StepsEurope. Apparent location of most of the novel’s episodes. A whitewashed village in an unnamed country appears to indicate backwardness and remoteness from twentieth century city life. From here, […]

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Places: Steppenwolf

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Der Steppenwolf, 1927 (English translation, 1929) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological Time of work: 1920’s Places Discussed Magic Theater Magic SteppenwolfTheater. Literally, the hell of Steppenwolf’s mind and soul. Although the trip to the Magic Theater does not occur until the end of the novel, it is there that Hesse […]

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Places: The Spy

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1821 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical Time of work: Late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *New York City *New Spy, TheYork City. At the time in which this story is set, the city that James Fenimore Cooper calls New York is confined […]

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Places: The Sport of the Gods

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: serial, 1901; book, 1902 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Naturalism Time of work: Late nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Southern town Southern Sport of the Gods, Thetown. The unnamed southern town is supposed to represent a typical place in the South following the Civil War. While […]

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Places: Spoon River Anthology

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1915 Type of work: Poetry Places Discussed Spoon River Spoon Spoon River AnthologyRiver. Imaginary midwestern town that is probably loosely based on Lewiston, Illinois, where Masters studied law in his father’s office and practiced for a year before moving to Chicago. Masters’s book is a collection of 243 free verse epitaphs, in which […]

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Places: The Spoils of Poynton

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1897 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: Late nineteenth century Places Discussed Poynton Poynton. Spoils of Poynton, TheEnglish home of Mrs. Gereth and her son that is the focus of the novel. Mrs. Gereth lived in the house with her husband until his death and intends to […]

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Places: Speculations About Jakob

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Mutmassungen über Jakob, 1959 (English translation, 1963) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: 1956 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Jerichow Jerichow Speculations About Jakob (YEHR-ee-kov). Seaside town in East Germany’s Mecklenburg state (not to be confused with the real town of Jerichow in Saxony-Anhalt). […]

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Places: South Wind

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1917 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social satire Time of work: Early twentieth century Places Discussed Nepenthe Nepenthe South Wind (nih-PEHN-thee). Fictional Italian island in the Tyrrhenian Sea. Nepenthe is noted for its sirocco or south wind, upon which the island’s inhabitants routinely blame their foibles and shortcomings. From a distance, […]

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Places: The Spanish Tragedy

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: c. 1594 First produced: c. 1585-1589 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: Sixteenth century Places Discussed Royal courts Royal Spanish Tragedy, Thecourts. The play opens by alternating scenes between the court of Spain and the court of Portugal–with the only perceptible difference between the two royal courts being […]

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Places: The Sound of Waves

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Shiosai, 1954 (English translation, 1956) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Idyll Time of work: The 1950’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Uta-jima Uta-jima Sound of Waves, The (ew-tah-jee-muh). Japanese island, whose name translates as “Song Island,” that provides the novel’s central setting. With a coastline of less than […]

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Places: The Sound and the Fury

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1929 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Stream of consciousness Time of work: 1900-1928 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Yoknapatawpha County Yoknapatawpha Sound and the Fury, TheCounty (YOK-nuh-puh-TAW-fuh). Beginning with his third novel, William Faulkner set a great deal of his fiction in the imaginary Yoknapatawpha County. Faulkner drew […]

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Places: The Sot-Weed Factor

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1960 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Picaresque Time of work: Late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *London *London. Sot-Weed Factor, TheCapital and leading city of England. The last years of the seventeenth century and first years of the eighteenth were a time of […]

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Places: The Sorrows of Young Werther

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Die Leiden des jungen Werthers, 1774 (English translation, 1780) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Bildungsroman Time of work: 1770’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Walheim Walheim Sorrows of Young Werther, The (vahl-HIM). Small town in Germany’s Rhineland-Pfalz region. Near this town is an idyllic country village that enables […]

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Places: Sophie’s Choice

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1979 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: 1947 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *New York City *New Sophie’s ChoiceYork City. Great cosmopolitan city in which Stingo meets Sophie. The city has long drawn young people from the hinterland, and Stingo is no exception. Certain […]

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Places: Sons and Lovers

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1913 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: Late nineteenth century Places Discussed Bestwood Bestwood. Sons and LoversEnglish coal-mining town in Nottinghamshire in which the novel is primarily set. Dominated by mine buildings, machinery, and towering slag heaps, Bestwood depends for its existence on the local coal company, […]

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Places: Sonnets of Shakespeare

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Sonnets, 1609 Type of work: Poetry Places Discussed Cosmos Cosmos. Sonnets of ShakespeareNatural phenomena of heaven and Earth are compared to human activities. The universe is like a huge stage, on which each natural element performs at its peak of perfection then declines and dies; likewise, a youth experiences a moment of perfection […]

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Places: Sonnets from the Portuguese

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1850 Type of work: Poetry Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Pastoral settings Pastoral Sonnets from the Portuguesesettings. Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s imagery derives from several sources suggestive of place. Often, she does not specifically name the place that she invokes, but a close reading can determine it. Her first sonnet speaks […]

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Places: The Song of the World

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Le Chant du monde, 1934 (English translation, 1937) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Impressionistic realism Time of work: Early twentieth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed River River. Song of the World, TheUnnamed stream that is the thread on which most of the events in The Song of […]

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Places: The Song of the Lark

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1915 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Impressionistic realism Time of work: Late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Moonstone Moonstone. Song of the Lark, TheFictional town set in the sand hills of Colorado, closely modeled on Red Cloud, Nebraska, where Willa Cather spent her […]

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Places: Song of Solomon

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1977 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Bildungsroman Time of work: 1869-1963 Places Discussed Shalimar Shalimar Song of Solomon (SHAL-ee-mahr). The ancestral home of Solomon and Ryna, Jake (Macon Dead), and Sing (Singing Bird). According to legend, Solomon could fly. Close by are Ryna’s Gulch and Solomon’s Leap. The mysteries of Pilate’s […]

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Places: The Song of Roland

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Chanson de Roland, twelfth century Type of work: Poetry Type of plot: Chivalric romance Time of work: c. 778 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Roncesvalles *Roncesvalles Song of Roland, The (rahn-SEHS-val-yay). Pass in northern Spain’s Pyrenees mountain range where Roland, King Charlemagne’s nephew, is believed to have been ambushed and […]

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Places: The Song of Hiawatha

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1855 Type of work: Poetry Type of plot: Folklore Time of work: Aboriginal period Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Ojibway land Ojibway Song of Hiawatha, Theland (oh-JIHB-way; also spelled Ojibwa). Area inhabited by the Algonquian-speaking peoples of the Upper Great Lakes–a region encompassing much of what is now Ontario, Manitoba, […]

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Places: Solaris

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1961 (English translation, 1970) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Science fiction Time of work: The future Places Discussed Solaris Solaris. SolarisFictional planet in a distant star system on which the entire novel is set. A planet in a binary stellar system (one with two suns), Solaris has a highly unstable orbit […]

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Places: Sohrab and Rustum

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1853 Type of work: Poetry Type of plot: Historical Time of work: Antiquity Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Central Asia Central Sohrab and RustumAsia. Scene of the battle between the forces of Persia and their Tartar enemies. Arnold wrote this poem in part to illustrate his theories concerning the superiority […]

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Places: So Big

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1924 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: Early twentieth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed High Prairie High So BigPrairie. Dutch farming community southwest of Chicago where Ferber’s protagonist, Selina Peake, goes to teach in a primitive one-room schoolhouse after her gambler father is […]

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Places: The Snake Pit

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Olav Audunssøn i Hestviken (2 volumes, 1925; in English as The Axe, 1928, and The Snake Pit, 1929; included in the complete tetrology The Master of Hestviken, 1934) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical Time of work: Late thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries Places Discussed Hestviken Hestviken. Snake Pit, TheHome of […]

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Places: Smoke

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Dym, 1867 (English translation, 1868) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: 1862-1865 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Baden-Baden *Baden-Baden. SmokePopular spa in Germany’s Black Forest area in which the novel is set. A Russian student and the son of a civil servant, Grigóry Litvinov, […]

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Places: The Small House at Allington

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: serial, 1862-1864; book, 1864 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Domestic realism Time of work: Mid-nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Allington Allington. Small House at Allington, TheEstate of Squire Christopher Dale in Anthony Trollope’s fictional district of Barsetshire in southern England. The squire lives in the estate’s […]

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Places: Slow Homecoming

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Langsame Heimkehr, 1979 (The Long Way Around); Die Lehre der Sainte-Victoire, 1980 (The Lesson of Mont-Sainte-Victoire); Kindergeschichte, 1981 (Child Story) (English translation, 1985 as Slow Homecoming); conceived together with the drama Über die Dörfer (beyond the villages), 1981 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Philosophical realism Time of work: Late 1970’s and […]

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Places: Slaughterhouse-Five

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1969 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical realism, science fiction, black comedy Time of work: 1922-1976 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Cape Cod *Cape Slaughterhouse-FiveCod. Massachusetts setting of the novel’s present-time autobiographical frame in the first and last chapters, Cape Cod is where author Kurt Vonnegut lived while […]

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Places: The Skin of Our Teeth

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1942 First produced: 1942 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Phantasmagoric Time of work: All human history Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Excelsior Excelsior. Skin of Our Teeth, TheFictional New Jersey city, whose very name implies upward striving, that is the home of the novel’s Antrobus family. Mother, daughter, […]

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Places: Six Characters in Search of an Author

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1921 (English translation, 1922) First produced: Sei personaggi in cerca d’autore: Commedia da fare, 1921 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Comedy Time of work: Early twentieth century Places Discussed Theater stage Theater Six Characters in Search of an Authorstage. The primary setting of the stage play is itself a theater stage. […]

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Places: Sister Philomène

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Sœur Philomène, 1861 (English translation, 1890) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological Time of work: Nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Sainte-Thérèse Ward Sainte-Thérèse Sister PhilomèneWard (sant-tay-REHZ). Hospital ward committed to Sister Philomène’s charge that eventually becomes her entire world. The hospital in which the ward is […]

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Places: Sister Carrie

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1900 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Naturalism Time of work: 1889 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Chicago *Chicago. Sister CarrieGreat Midwestern American city for which Caroline Meeber, or Carrie, boards a train as the novel opens. When Carrie arrives in Chicago, she is both nervous and youthfully optimistic […]

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Places: The Sirens of Titan

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1959 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Science fiction Time of work: Nightmare Ages, between World War II and the Third Great Depression Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Chrono-synclastic infundibula Chrono-synclastic Sirens of Titan, Theinfundibula. Vaguely defined phenomena in space that serve as something like space and time portals […]

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Places: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First transcribed: Fourteenth century Type of work: Poetry Type of plot: Arthurian romance Time of work: Sixth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Camelot Camelot. Sir Gawain and the Green KnightSite of King Arthur’s court. As the poem begins, attractive young lords and ladies celebrate the Christmas season at Camelot. Dressed in […]

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Places: Sir Charles Grandison

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1753-1754 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Fiction of manners Time of work: Eighteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Grandison Hall Grandison Sir Charles GrandisonHall. Family home of Sir Charles Grandison in the Essex suburbs of London. Located just outside London, Grandison Hall represents a level of remove […]

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Places: The Adventurous Simplicissimus

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Der abenteuerliche Simplicissimus, 1669 (English translation, 1912) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Picaresque Time of work: Early seventeenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Spessart *Spessart. Adventurous Simplicissimus, TheTown in a mountainous region of Germany, not far from which is located the earthen hut where Simplicissimus lives until […]

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Places: Silence

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Chimmoku, 1966 (English translation, 1969) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical realism Time of work: 1632-1644 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Kyushu *Kyushu Silence (kyew-shew). Southernmost island of the Japanese chain, where the Portuguese missionaries land. Their entry at the foot of the nation suggests an interesting geographic […]

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Places: Silas Marner

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1861 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Domestic realism Time of work: Early nineteenth century Places Discussed Raveloe Raveloe. Silas MarnerVillage in central England to which Marner moves after his best friend’s false accusations of dishonesty force him to leave an unnamed industrial city in northern England. During his first fifteen years […]

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Places: The Sign of Four

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1890 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Detective and mystery Time of work: 1888 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Baker Street *Baker Sign of Four, TheStreet. London street on which Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson share upstairs (“first floor” in British terminology) lodgings at the fictional address of […]

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Places: Siddhartha

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1922 (English translation, 1951) Type of work: Novella Type of plot: Bildungsroman Time of work: 563?-483? b.c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *India *India. SiddharthaAsian country in which the young Siddhartha, a tall and handsome Brahman’s son, lives and travels in his search for fulfillment. His quest for enlightenment parallels […]

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Places: A Shropshire Lad

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1896 Type of work: Poetry Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Shropshire *Shropshire. Shropshire Lad, AThe sheep farming county of Shropshire provides the backdrop for Housman’s poems and functions as the nurturing mother country of the personas depicted in his verses. While bucolic and peaceful in many respects, the harsher aspects […]

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Places: The Shoemaker’s Holiday

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1600 First produced: 1600 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Comedy Time of work: c. 1413-1422 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Tower Street Tower Shoemaker’s Holiday, TheStreet. London residence and workshop of Simon Eyre, who rises from master shoemaker to become lord mayor of London. A chaotic place populated […]

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Places: Ship of Fools

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1962 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Allegory Time of work: August 22-September 17, 1931 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Veracruz *Veracruz. Ship of FoolsPort city in Mexico from which the German ship Vera departs. Most of its passengers are Germans returning to their homeland after visiting Mexico for […]

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Places: The Sheltering Sky

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1949 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: After World War II Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Northwestern Africa *Northwestern Sheltering Sky, TheAfrica. Vast arid region overlapping modern Algeria and Mali in which the novel is set and where author Paul Bowles spent a year […]

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Places: The Sheltered Life

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1932 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: 1906-1914 Places Discussed Queenborough Queenborough. Sheltered Life, TheFictionalized version of Virginia’s capital city, Richmond, during the early twentieth century. In the years following the Civil War, Queenborough is sharply divided into three distinct geographical areas: Washington Avenue, Granite Boulevard, and […]

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Places: She

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1887 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Adventure Time of work: Late nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Cambridge University *Cambridge SheUniversity. Great English university in which the novel begins and ends. The university represents the staid, rational, and traditional patterns of British thought and learning. Against this […]

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Places: She Stoops to Conquer

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1773 First produced: 1773 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Comedy of manners Time of work: Eighteenth century Places Discussed Hardcastle Mansion Hardcastle She Stoops to ConquerMansion. This village dwelling is a substantially built house, which nevertheless must have been timbered and devoid of the familiar medieval stone turrets and towers that […]

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Places: Shadows on the Rock

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1931 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical Time of work: Late seventeenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Quebec City *Quebec Shadows on the RockCity. French settlement on the St. Lawrence River, in what is now Canada’s province of Quebec, that is the novel’s principal setting. The oldest […]

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Places: Seventeen

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1916 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Comic realism Time of work: Early twentieth century Places Discussed Midland city Midland Seventeencity. Unnamed midwestern city that provides the novel neighborhood setting; Booth Tarkington calls it simply a “middle-sized midland city.” However, Tarkington based it on Indianapolis, Indiana, his birthplace and hometown. (Readers will […]

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Places: The Seven Who Were Hanged

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Rasskaz o semi poveshannykh, 1908 (English translation, 1909) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Social realism Time of work: Early twentieth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *St. Petersburg *St. Seven Who Were Hanged, ThePetersburg. Capital of Russia at the time this novel is set. The entire story takes […]

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Places: Seven Against Thebes

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First produced: Hepta epi Thēbas, 467 b.c.e. (English translation, 1777) Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: Antiquity Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Thebes *Thebes Seven Against Thebes (theebz). Largest city in the ancient Greek region of Boeotia. In Greek mythology, Thebes is a central location in tales […]

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Places: Set This House on Fire

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1960 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: Mid-twentieth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Sambuco Sambuco. Set This House on FireFictional village on Italy’s west-central coast, not far from Salerno–a six-hour drive south from Rome and one hour from Naples. It sits atop imposing […]

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Places: A Sentimental Journey

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: A Sentimental Journey Through France and Italy, 1768 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Sentimental Time of work: 1760’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Calais *Calais Sentimental Journey, A (ka-LAY). French port town on the English Channel, where Yorick lands after crossing from England. The author places travelers in […]

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Places: A Sentimental Education

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: L’Éducation sentimentale, 1869 (English translation, 1898) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Realism Time of work: Nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Paris *Paris. Sentimental Education, AFrance’s leading city functions as the setting for the novel on several levels. First, it exists on the purely physical level. Gustave […]

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Places: Sense and Sensibility

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1811 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Domestic realism Time of work: Early nineteenth century Places Discussed Barton cottage Barton Sense and Sensibilitycottage. Home of Mrs. Dashwood and her three daughters, near Barton Park in Devonshire, three days’ journey from London in southwest England, that is under the control of a distant […]

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Places: El Señor Presidente

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1946 (English translation, 1963) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical realism Time of work: Early twentieth century Places Discussed Cathedral Cathedral. Señor Presidente, ElUnnamed cathedral in whose shadow the novel opens as the sleep of several homeless men is disturbed by a police officer who starts to taunt a mentally disturbed […]

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Places: Sejanus His Fall

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1605 First produced: 1603 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: First century c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Rome *Rome. Sejanus His FallCenter of the ancient Roman Empire, which is under the rule of the emperor Tiberius at the time in which the play is […]

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Places: Seize the Day

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1956 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Domestic realism Time of work: 1950’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Manhattan *Manhattan. Seize the DayBorough of New York City in which most of the novella’s action takes place, particularly among the fashionable neighborhoods near Broadway in Manhattan’s Upper West Side. During […]

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Places: Seeing Things

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1991 Type of work: Poetry Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Cumae *Cumae Seeing Things (KYU-mee). Ancient town in Italy, believed to be the seat of an oracle whom the hero Aeneas is addressing in Heaney’s opening poem, “The Golden Bough,” translated loosely from a passage in Vergil’s Aeneid (c. 29-19 […]

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Places: The Secret Agent

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1907 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: 1880’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *London *London. Secret Agent, TheCenter of the British Empire and home to exiled revolutionaries and refugees from throughout Europe. During the time of the novel, the great latitude and freedom extended […]

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Places: The Second Shepherds’ Play

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First transcribed: Secunda Pastorum, fifteenth century Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Mystery and miracle play Time of work: c. 4 b.c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Yorkshire *Yorkshire. Second Shepherds’ Play, TheNorthern England moors on which shepherds are watching over their flocks by night. In contrast with biblical shepherds, however, […]

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Places: The Seasons

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1730; final version, 1746 Type of work: Poetry Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Scotland *Scotland. Seasons, TheThomson’s native country, which he left in 1725 in order to pursue a literary career in England. In a letter home, he compared the natural landscapes of the two countries, ruing England’s lack of […]

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Places: A Season in Rihata

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Une Saison à Rihata, 1981 (English translation, 1988) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: Late twentieth century Places Discussed Rihata Rihata. Season in Rihata, ASleepy, impoverished African town standing at the bend of an unidentified river in an unnamed country. Rihata is home to people who have […]

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Places: A Season in Hell

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Une Saison en enfer, 1873 (English translation, 1932) Type of work: Poetry Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Hell Hell. Season in Hell, APlace of damned souls. As in the traditional story of Lucifer, the narrator has, for the sin of pride, been cast out of paradise–here represented as the licentiousness […]

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Places: The Seagull

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1904 as Chayka, (English translation, 1909) First produced: 1896; revised, 1898 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Impressionistic realism Time of work: Nineteenth century Places Discussed Sorin farm Sorin Seagull, Thefarm. Setting for the entire play. Chekhov carefully crafts the setting of his play so that the action of the work gradually […]

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Places: The Sea-Wolf

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1904 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Adventure Time of work: 1904 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *San Francisco Bay *San Sea-Wolf, TheFrancisco Bay. California’s great natural harbor, in which the novel opens with the protagonist, Humphrey Van Weyden, crossing the bay on a ferryboat. In the midst of […]

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Places: The Sea of Grass

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1936 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Regional Time of work: 1885-1910 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Salt Fork Salt Sea of Grass, TheFork. Fictional New Mexico frontier town that embodies characteristics of historically real places on the Western frontier. Vividly displaying the shifting boundaries of a newly settled […]

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Places: Sea Garden

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1916 Type of work: Poetry Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Sea Sea. Sea GardenThe basic symbolic contrast in the poems is between the sea and the land, the sea being treated as both nurturer and destroyer. Several of the collection’s most successful poems–such as “Sea Poppies” and “Sea Violet”–are set […]

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Places: The School for Wives

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1663 as L’École des femmes (English translation, 1732) First produced: 1662 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Comedy of manners Time of work: Seventeenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Parisian public square *Parisian School for Wives, Thepublic square. The play’s setting–an open square in a city full of […]

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Places: The School for Scandal

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1780 First produced: 1777 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Comedy of manners Time of work: Eighteenth century Places Discussed Lady Sneerwell’s dressing room Lady School for Scandal, TheSneerwell’s dressing room. Despite the fact that the stage direction indicates that the first scene of the play takes place at Lady Sneerwell’s dressing […]

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Places: The School for Husbands

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1661 as L’École des maris (English translation, 1732) First produced: 1661 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Comedy of manners Time of work: 1660’s Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Paris *Paris. School for Husbands, TheFrance’s capital and leading city whose liberating influence on the naïve, obedient, exploited Isabelle makes […]

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Places: The Scarlet Letter

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1850 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: Seventeenth or eighteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Massachusetts Bay Colony *Massachusetts Scarlet Letter, TheBay Colony. Early American New England colony established by British Puritans who were seeking religious freedom. This is the primary setting of […]

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Places: The Satyricon

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First transcribed: c. 60 (English translation, 1694) Type of work: Short fiction Type of plot: Satire Time of work: First century c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Southern Italy *Southern Italy. Region in which most of The SatyriconSatyricon, The is set. Until the Pyrrhic and Second Punic Wars of the third century […]

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Places: The Satanic Verses

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1988; in United States, 1989 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Fantasy Time of work: Late twentieth and early seventh centuries Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Bostan BostanSatanic Verses, The. Fictional Air India flight from Bombay to London that is blown up by Sikh terrorists over the English coastline. […]

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Places: Sartoris

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1929 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Psychological realism Time of work: Immediately following World War I Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Jefferson Jefferson. SartorisFictional town in the northwest corner of the state of Mississippi. Faulkner drew many details from his hometown of Oxford for his portrayal of Jefferson, […]

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Places: Sappho

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1819 (English translation, 1928) First produced: 1818 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: Sixth century b.c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Lesbos *Lesbos Sappho (lehz-bos). Greek island in the eastern Aegean Sea, off the coast to the east of what is now Turkey. The play […]

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Places: Sappho

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Sapho, 1884 (English translation, 1886) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Naturalism Time of work: Nineteenth century Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Paris *Paris. SapphoCapital of France in which the novel opens in the midst of a costume ball at the home of the wealthy engineer Déchelette on the […]

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Places: Sanine

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: Sanin, 1907 (English translation, 1915) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Philosophical Time of work: 1906 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Provincial town Provincial Saninetown. Unnamed Russian community in which almost the entire novel takes place. The town is characterized as being unremarkable and thoroughly typical, an example of […]

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Places: Sanctuary

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1931 Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Melodrama Time of work: 1929 Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed Yoknapatawpha County Yoknapatawpha SanctuaryCounty (YOK-nuh-puh-TAW-fuh). Faulkner’s mythical county, which is a setting in several of his works. The Old Frenchman’s Place is an abandoned plantation house deep in the county, which has […]

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Places: Samson Agonistes

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1671 Type of work: Drama Type of plot: Tragedy Time of work: c. 1100 b.c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Gaza *Gaza. Samson AgonistesPhilistine city. The prison is at once a literal punishment by the Philistines for the Nazarite Samson’s Hebraic faith and fight against the Philistines and a metaphorical […]

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Places: Salammbô

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

First published: 1862 (English translation, 1886) Type of work: Novel Type of plot: Historical Time of work: Third century b.c.e. Asterisk denotes entries on real places. Places Discussed *Carthage *Carthage. SalammbôAncient North African city, whose ruins can now be found in the marshland northeast of Tunis. In classical times Carthage stood on a peninsula (the […]

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