Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Judith Lewin

Second Advisor

April Selley




tobias, collection, death, marchen, relationship


Sketches of Life is a collection of six short stories that explore the role of death within the narrative. The collection starts with Ein deutsches Marchen, a dialogue between Tobias Leeger and myself. As the conversation of Marchen unfolds, Tobias tells a story that questions the relationship between death and human nature. The next four works of the collection all actively explore the questions raised by Tobias through their unique explorations of death: To The Monastery investigates a young hermit’s detrimental relationship with society, The Iroquois League examines the narrator’s elusive relationship with his spirituality, Auspicious Tigers tells the tragic tale of a tiger hunt gone wrong, and The Kaiserkeller follows the adventures of four reckless musician in Hamburg’s infamous red-light district. The collection’s final piece, An American Ending, continues the conversation started in En deutsches Marchen through reexamine the implications of Tobias’ story: ultimately, the reader leaves Sketches of Life with a more felt understanding of death’s role within the narrative.