Vicious Binaries: Gender and Authorial Paranoia in Dreiser’s "Second Choice," Howells' "Editha," and Hemingway’s "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber"
Feminist treatment examining the binary structures of passivity and activity in association with the female and male characters of all three stories. Reads Hemingway’s construction of Margot as the most paranoid. Contends that though excluded from the action of the story, Margot destroys not only men’s lives but also men’s self-concepts. Harris sums up, “If these stories tell us anything about our culture, it is, at the very least, that male writers walk in fear that women will retaliate against male postures of author-ity.”