Lost in the City: An Exploration of Edward P. Jones's Short Fiction

Section 1: Mapping Lost in the City

By Lauren PhelpsMohammed Sumili
ArcGIS Maps Constructed by Ahmed Foggie

Living in a specific neighborhood not only shapes identity but also governs the geographical area a person can move within over the course of their life. Most of the characters’ physical mobility orbits around their home addresses while their age, class, and gender dictate the range of those orbits. In “The First Day,” the limitations of geography are spelled out as the girl is sent to the new public school, Walker Jones, closer to her home. Jones portrays how the real limitations of geography, like the location of the house and the neighborhood, dictate the quality of education and the shaping of identity for this little girl and the Black community as a whole. However, Jones avoids making blanket statements about the Black experience. Jones uses street names and public venues to establish a sense of direction in his stories and tag specific subgroups within the larger Black community in Chocolate City.

This map charts the specific addresses Jones references in Lost in the City. Selecting a specific story the left hand side will reveal only those locations mentioned in that story. To the right is a color-coded legend with the exact name of each point on the map. Zoom in and out by using the plus and minus symbols. To reset the map view to the original setting, select the home icon.

This page has paths:

Contents of this tag: