By: Jesse Stuart “SPLIT CHERRY TREE” THE AUTHOR Jesse Stuart Born in Greenup County, Ky. Most of his stories/poems involve education and living in the South DICTION Author’s choice of words. Authors are very specific about which words they put into their writing (to convey certain feelings or messages to their audience) Often, diction can be used to display different dialects, or ways that people of a certain culture speak. Author’s diction is very important to a describe a character by the way they speak, or their dialogue GENRE Type of literature, or what category the literature fits into. This story’s genre is Appalachian Literature THEME AND CONFLICT Theme: As times change, so does education. Conflict: Man vs Society Pa vs. Society/Change SUMMARY This story, set in the Appalachian area, focuses on the narrator, a young boy named Dave, and his Pa. Dave an 5 other boys broke a cherry tree on a field trip trying to catch a lizard. They must each pay $1 for the tree. Dave does not have the money. Dave must stay after school 2 hours, for 2 days to make the money up. SUMMARY CONT. When Dave gets home late, Pa is enraged. Dave has to walk 6 miles to and from school. When he gets home he has hours of work to do on the farm. He is the first in his family to go to high school. Pa plans to go to school and confront Professor Herbert. He wants to know why the boys were out “bug larnin” instead of being in school. He plans to take a gun to school! (stereotype) SUMMARY CONTINUED The next day Pa goes to school with a gun. He is very angry and tells Professor Herbert that he doesn’t think they way they have been teaching the students is right. Professor Herbert calms Pa down and allows him to stay a whole school day, taking him around and showing him what they teach and how education has changed. Pa even sees germs for the first time! SUMMARY … Pa realizes that education has changed with time (theme). Dave realizes that Pa isn’t so bad after all. Pa has a good heart (black snake) Pa ends up staying with Dave after school to help him work off the money.