Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts


Creative Writing

First Advisor

Blackwood, Scott


AN ABSTRACT OF THE THESIS OF Roberta L. Turner, for the Master of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing Fiction, presented on April 5, 2017, at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. TITLE: Dance of the Undead: a Collection of Short Stories MAJOR PROFESSOR: Scott Blackwood Dance of the Undead: a Collection of Short Stories, is six short stories that all share the common thread of having guilty characters as the main protagonist who are in transition between two states of being, or in a liminal state. The word, undead, is a defamiliarized way of saying alive; the characters are not dead, but are they really living? The characters in these stories are metaphorically in liminal states of varying situations. Whether it be Mazie and June in the story “Amazing Grace,” who are transitioning from guilt of an abusive relationship with each other to grace, or Clara’s children in “Debt,” who are transitioning from having a mother they felt could take care of herself, to knowing she must have constant care because of dementia, all the stories in this collection show how characters get from one state of being to another by following them through their journey.




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