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This paper was published in Tsukuba University's Journal of the Foreign Language Center, in March 2010. I examine the way that Alice Munro's 1969 short story "The Shining Houses" secretly encodes---in imagery--- the problems that face fossil-fuel dependent economies. The story is a tiny microcosmic world: one suburban woman stands up for one farmer as the other suburban residents seek to have the farm demolished. This is one of Alice Munro's earliest stories and I see it as an embryonic expression of her later artistic concerns.