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It has been said that when Hernan Cortes reached Mexico the Aztecs thought he was their god Quetzalcoatl (read more)

Featured Article: Novella

Portrait of Chaucer as a Canterbury pilgrim in the Ellesmere manuscript of The Canterbury Tales, the earliest well-known example of novella-type literature in English
A novella is a narrative work of prose fiction shorter in both length and breadth than a novel, but longer than a short story. Typically, novellas dramatize individual events, or a short series of events, such as a day in the life, or an important turning point in a character’s life. While novellas normally do not have specific requirements in terms of length, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America limit novellas to 60 to 130 pages, or 17,500 to 40,000 words.

Like its counterpart “novel,” the English word “novella” is derived from the Italian word “novella” (plural: “novelle”) meaning a tale; piece of news. Novellas as a literary form emerged in the early fourteenth century in Italian Renaissance literature, later gaining prestige through the late nineteenth century writings of Russian and German authors. Some famous and popular novellas include Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis, George Orwell’s Animal Farm, and Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness.

Popular Article: Sphinx

Marble sphinx on tomb in Metairie Cemetery, New Orleans
The sphinx has had a long history of secrecy and intrigue, being viewed by many cultures as guardians of knowledge and as speaking in riddles. Originating in Ancient Egypt, the sphinx as a mythical creature existed in Ancient Greece and Mesopotamia, was revered by the later Western World, and to this day still exists in Eastern cultures.

The sphinx has no history of real living existence, but exists only in art and literature, representing human desire for that which is greater than themselves, both in terms of the body and the mind. Yet the sphinx also embodies paradox, beautiful and alluring, she is also dangerous even deadly; the guardian of knowledge and threat to evil, encountering a sphinx is described as confusing and destructive.