Hemingway’s short stories, written when he was in his early 20s, show the emergence of his literary voice,” says Dr. David Krause, associate provost at Dominican University. “He explores the relationship within the family, the relationship between friends, with the community and what it means to be at home in the world.”
David Krause, who holds a doctoral degree in English and American literature from Yale University, will give a six-week class on the short stories of Ernest Hemingway in the author’s birthplace home beginning Tuesday, Feb. 26. Offered through the Newberry Library, the class is co-sponsored by Dominican’s School of Leadership and Continuing Studies and the Ernest Hemingway Foundation of Oak Park. The series will be held Tuesday evenings from 6 to 8 p.m. through April 1 in the Hemingway home at 339 N. Oak Park Ave.
The stories to be covered include: “The Doctor and the Doctor’s Wife,” “Ten Indians,” “Hills Like White Elephants,” “A Clean Well-Lighted Place” and “The Snows of Kilimanjaro.”
“A common theme of Hemingway’s concerns choices,” Krause said, “wherever we are or whoever we are … it involves difficult decisions. How does a young man from the village become a citizen of the world?”
Tuition for the class is $140. For more information about the class or to register, please contact the Newberry Library at 312/255-3700 or visit the website at www.newberry.org/programs/seminars.html.
The Ernest Hemingway Foundation owns two Hemingway houses, the restored birthplace at 339 N. Oak Park Ave., which is open to the public daily; and the boyhood home at 600 N. Kenilworth Ave., which it acquired in 2002.
Since the acquisition of the boyhood home, there has been considerable discussion by the Hemingway Board of Directors as to how the property should be used. One group favors a longtime partnership with an academic institution.
“At this point, there is no formal relationship with Dominican University,” said Hemingway President Allan Baldwin. “Our dealings with them are the same as we have with many organizations, such as the Oak Park Library. But, the Boyhood Home Committee is making real progress towards a potential long-term partnership with Dominican University for use of the boyhood home.”
Under a partnership, joint programs could be developed, making Hemingway a larger part of the Dominican curriculum, with the added benefit of drawing more scholars to the Hemingway Foundation programs.
Baldwin points out programs like the short story seminar are a good example of educating the public about Hemingway and making the home more accessible.
“We have a long way to go to complete a successful agreement,” said Baldwin. Virginia Cassin has chaired the Boyhood Home Committee, which includes many Foundation members. Both the Dominican and Hemingway boards want to ensure that any agreement is in keeping with the mission statements of both.
The foundation’s plan for the boyhood home is about the same as the one envisioned in their 2005 plan, which included rebuilding the music room that was removed many years ago; restoring the “public spaces” on the first floor; and using the second and third floors as residential space. Ernest’s third-floor bedroom would also be restored. The house would not be open to the public daily like the birthplace, but would be used for special functions and events.