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Last Updated on July 29, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 119

  • Research existentialism, and then discuss how "The Switchman" fits into this school of writing. What evidence of Franz Kafka's influence do you find?
  • Critics disagree about the role of Magical Realism in "The Switchman." Research Magical Realism and discuss your opinion. Where do you draw the line between use of the fantastic and Magical Realism?
  • Critics offer widely disparate interpretations of "The Switchman." Compare and contrast several of these interpretations, and offer your own interpretation with evidence to back it up.
  • To what effect does Arreola use dialogue between his two characters as the bulk of the narrative? Discuss the role of point of view in the story, and use another contrasting work of short fiction as an example.

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