From the Editor:
It’s not feeling too Southern today here in the Ozarks. Tonight’s forecast is clear with a low of 1 degree. Hmm. The hot, sultry South seems far away,
and I’m reminded of the year I taught in Finland at the University of Helsinki. Finnish students were fascinated by Southern literature, mainly because of its exoticism. Finland lacks that. But I suppose Finns were also attracted to the idea of the penetrating Southern heat that knocks you over and drives you to do things you probably shouldn’t. It’s certainly fascinating to read about, but for the Finns it was in the end hard for them to take seriously and empathize with. All they had was the sauna, and that’s a quite different experience. Indeed, it was really quite difficult getting them to feel the Southern heat of Faulkner’s “Dry September” and Jean Toomer’s Cane, despite the greatness of those two works. That doesn’t stop Finns from reading about and studying the South, and indeed some excellent work has lately been coming out of Finland focusing on the South, perhaps most significantly Mikko Saikku’s brilliant environmental history of the Mississippi Delta, This Delta, This Land. Southern studies may be waning a bit in postmodern America, but it still seems to be booming over- seas.
We’ll see what’s new and cooking in Southern studies this March in Birming- ham at the SSSL’s conference with its focus on labor. Perhaps the world’s most subtle reader of Southern texts, Richard Godden, hailing from Britain, is a keynote speaker, further evidence of the European connection. While there is a long list of reasons to be in Birmingham, hearing Richard speak is certainly right there at the top.
Hope everyone’s semester has gone well (if you’re teaching) and that every- one’s holiday season is more peaceful than the times we live in.
A Message from the SSSL President:
Plans for our meeting in Birmingham, March 30, 31, and April 1, are going very well. Riche’ Richardson, program chair, reports that she has received proposals for papers and topics for panel discussions that look very promising. We will have a full three days, and we will apparently have a substantial attendance. Details for the program and for registration will be announced on the Web-site soon.
This meeting will be important to the organization not only for the quality of the scholarship represented in the papers presented, but also for the formal and informal discussions that will take place about the future and direction of the SSSL. This is necessar- ily a time of transition for us because of the changing nature of the profession and the broadening of the concept of region. The publications committee held a useful meeting during the ASA convention in Washington. Their report will provide us with a framework for shaping the future of the Society and launching new projects.
I must thank the members of the publications committee for their efforts; they have invested considerable imagination and time in the organization’s interests. Scott Romine, Riche’ Richardson, and Jon Smith were President Andrews’ original appointments, but a number of others have come forward to help. I also must thank those who have chaired and served on other committees this year and kept the SSSL running.
The UNC Center for the Study of the American South invites applications for two one-year postdoctoral fellowships in the his- tory, culture, or society of the American South, to begin July 1, 2006. The awards will support two outstanding junior scholars in the revision of book-length manuscripts for publication in fields related to the South, broadly construed. The Center especially welcomes projects that draw on the special collections of the UNC-CH Library or other research collections of the Triangle area, or explicitly engage issues of southern regional identity or distinctiveness.
Salary will be $40,000, plus health insurance and $3,000 in research and travel funds. Applicants must have received the Ph.D. no more than four years before the fellowship begins. Scholars who have received tenure, published a previous scholarly book, or signed a book publication contract (except with UNC Press) are not eligible. Modest subventions are available for publication with UNC Press, and Fellows are encouraged to submit their final manuscripts there.
Applications are due November 1, 2005 and consist of a cover sheet (see www.unc.edu/depts/csas/), a curriculum vitae, three letters of recommendation, a three- to five-page description of the project, including plans for revision of the existing manuscript, and a writing sample from the project of no more than thirty pages.
Welty Papers Find Home at LSU
The LSU Libraries’ Special Collections is proud to become the new home of the Eudora Welty papers, a collection of Welty’s private letters, through a gift from Michael D. Robinson, Senior Director of Development, LSU Foundation. Mr. Robinson is the nephew of John Robinson to whom most of the letters are addressed.
The collection, which spans the years 1951-1957, is a unique and valuable resource for Welty scholars, according to Brannon Costello, Louisiana State University assistant professor of English who specializes in southern literature. Welty’s relationship with John Robinson was one of the most significant of her life, he notes. Not only did the two share a lifelong friendship and a shorter, complicated romance, but they also shared a devotion to the craft of writing.”
It should not surprise those who view the Eudora Welty Papers that as a result of Robinson and Welty’s intimacy, these letters open a window into the writer’s personal and professional life. The eclectic topics touched on in the papers include the theater, the cinema, artists, writers and Welty’s mother. She mentions important writers such as Robert Penn Warren, William Faulkner, Leonard Wolf, Sidonie-Gabrielle Collet, Elizabeth Spencer and Elizabeth Bowen. She does not limit her remarks to writers, but also comments on public figures and politicians, including Mississippi governor Ross Barnett and evangelist Billy Graham.
Of particular interest to Welty scholars, according to Costello, are several letters chronicling her stay in Ireland with writer Eliza- beth Bowen, another longtime friend. He notes, “We think of Welty as firmly rooted in Mississippi but in fact she was greatly affected by her stay in Ireland, and in her letters she is clearly distressed at the thought of leaving.” For example, she writes, “I would have stayed in Ireland all my life with trips from it not to it then.” Good portions of her letters describe the landscape and atmosphere in great detail and lament the fact that she is unable to stay permanently.
Welty traveled widely and held various lecturing and teaching posts. Travel, escape and freedom are important themes in her work in the 1950’s according to Costello. Through the letters, she shares with Robinson many of the feelings and first-hand ex- periences that she draws upon for much of the fiction collected in The Bride of the Innisfallen and Other Stories (1955). She also mentions her own struggles with writing and writing projects she was working on at the time. The letters also record the role she played in Robinson’s literary career, critiquing his work and continuously encouraging him.
Welty was born April 13, 1909 in Jackson, Mississippi. She attended Mississippi State College for Women in Columbus from 1925- 1927. She transferred to the University of Wisconsin in 1927, where she became an English major and began studying English Literature. In 1929 she received her Bachelor of Arts degree and moved on to graduate school at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business studying advertising. She won most of the major literary prizes during her career, including the Pulitzer Prize and the French Legion d’Honneur.
“Welty’s achievement is unsurpassed in American fiction: her work combines keen, often startling insights about human nature and about the social forces that shape individuals with an equally startling tenderness and compassion for even the most rep- rehensible of her characters,” says Costello. Costello has written several pieces discussing Welty’s work. His latest is “Playing Lady and Imitating Aristocrats: Race, Class and Money in Eudora Welty’s Delta Wedding and The Ponder Heart,” The Southern Quarterly 42.3 (2004):21-54.
The collection is currently being cataloged and will be available to researchers soon. Anyone interested in accessing the letters should contact Tara Z. Laver, Assistant Curator for Manuscripts at 225-578-6546.
The LSU Libraries Special Collections is located in Hill Memorial Library. Hours are 9a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Friday, and the library is open until 8 p.m. when school is in session. Saturday hours are 9a.m.-1p.m depending on holidays and campus events. Please call to confirm.
Julie Tessier 578-1282
Faulkner and Twain
CALLS FOR PAPERS
A Conference Sponsored by the Center for Faulkner Studies Southeast Missouri State University
Cape Girardeau, Missouri
October 19-21, 2006
This “Faulkner and Twain” conference invites proposals for twenty-minute papers on any topic related to Faulkner and/or Twain. All critical approaches, including theoretical and pedagogical, are welcomed, as well as papers on special collections of Twain and Faulkner. We are particularly interested in inter-textual approaches and papers treating such topics as the river, the frontier, humor, race, and history. Proposals for organized panels are also encouraged.
In addition to the paper sessions, the conference will include a keynote address by a noted scholar, a dramatic presentation based on the works of Faulkner and Twain, exhibits from the university’s Faulkner and Twain collections, and an historic tour of the local area.
Expanded versions of papers dealing with both authors will be considered for possible publication in a collection of essays. Southeast Missouri State University Press has expressed an interest in such a collection.
E-mail a 250-word abstract by April 30, 2006, to: email@example.com
Inquiries should be directed to Robert Hamblin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 573-651-2628, or Peter Froehlich at pfroehlich@semo. edu or 573-651-2766.
Paper proposals solicited for SSSL-sponsored panels at MLA 2006 (New Orleans):
The South before “The South.” Ideas of the American South that predate sectionalism, in literatures of contact and colonization, or early national U.S. literature before 1830. Comparatist approaches and approaches involving a hemispheric or Black Atlantic framework particularly welcome. 250-500 word abstracts by 10 Mar.; Jennifer R. Greeson (email@example.com)
The U.S. South in Non-U.S. Fiction. In literature of any period: representations and roles of the U.S. South in fictional narratives of non-U.S. geographical origin. 250-500 word abstracts by 10 Mar.; Jennifer R. Greeson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Madison Jones’ Garden of Innocence ed. Jan Nordby Gretlund, University Press of Southern Denmark, 2005. ISBN: 87-7674- 001-3 Essays by Jewel Spears Brooker, George Garrett, Richard Gray, Jan Nordby Gretlund, Madison Jones, Lewis A. Lawson, David Madden, and Hans H. Skei. Plus interviews and a Madison Jones bibliography, 207 pp. $34.95. U.S.: www.isbs.com Europe: email@example.com
Madison Jones is the author of eleven novels, among them The Innocent, An Exile (film: I Walk the Line), A Cry of Absence, Season of the Strangler, and Nashville 1864, winner of the T.S. Eliot Award. Jones’ latest novel, Herod’s Wife, appeared in 2003. Madison Jones is a central figure in American literature, but paradoxically not well-known. According to Madison Smartt Bell, William Hoffman, and Lee Smith, his novels are lessons in the possibility of the immediate. Jones’ influence on the early Cormac McCarthy is obvious, and others have been influenced by his settings, ideas, and style. Larry Brown in Joe to be sure, but also
William Gay in Provinces of Night, Robert Morgan in Gap Creek, Charles Frazier in Cold Mountain, and Ron Rash in One Foot in Eden. The Jones heritage is ‘an echo in the reader’s mind’ of something we are not allowed to forget about our existence, something dark, sinister, relentless, inexplicably evil, and radically tragic.
Professor Margaret D. Bauer, Rives Chair of Southern Literature at East Carolina University in Greenville, NC, is teaching a graduate seminar on “Southern Classics” this fall 2005 semester. The class read and reread Southern “classics,” including Mar- garet Mitchell’s GONE WITH THE WIND, William Faulkner’s ABSALOM, ABSALOM!, Zora Neale Hurston’s THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD, Robert Penn Warren’s ALL THE KING’S MEN, and Harper Lee’s TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, as well as a novel promising to become a classic, Charles Frazier’s COLD MOUNTAIN. Discussion has involved the questions how are (will) these novels standing the test of time and how has the critical response changed/evolved from decade to decade? The biggest surprise of the semester: the majority of the class had never seen the movie GONE WITH THE WIND. Expect to hear her students’ seminar papers at conferences near you in the next couple of years.
Margaret D. Bauer has published William Faulkner’s Legacy: “what shadow, what stain, what mark” with the University Press of Florida (2005). Bauer is also the editor of the North Carolina Literary Review, which featured the Outer Banks in its 2005 issue; see www.ecu.edu/nclr for more information
M. Thomas Inge, Randolph-Macon College
—-“Founding a Journal: RALS.” Resources for American Literary Study, 29 (2005): 1-8.
—-“Blotner Brought Faulkner to Charlottesville.” Richmond Times-Dispatch, June 19, 2005, p. E5.
—-“Jay Gatsby and the Little Tramp.” Studies in Popular Culture, 28 (October 2005): 60-69.
—-“Agrarians All! Or, Southerners Without Masters.” CrossRoads: A Southern Culture Annual. Macon, GA: Mercer Univer
sity Press, 2004. Pp. 256-75.
—-“William Faulkner and Guimaraes Rosa: A Brazilian Connection.” Faulkner and His Contemporaries. Jackson: University
Press of Mississippi, 2004. Pp. 173-88.
—-“Popular Culture Criticism and Faulkner.” A Companion to Faulkner Studies. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2004. Pp.
—-“Tara vs. Dogpatch.” The Scarlet Letter, 9 (Summer 2004): 3-12.
—-William Faulkner: Overlook Illustrated Lives. New York: Overlook Press (scheduled for 2006 publication).
Papers and Presentations:
—-“William Faulkner and Jean Renoir.” Global American South Conference, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, March
—-“Chuck Jones, Mark Twain, and the Art of Animation.” Fifth International Conference on Mark Twain Studies, Elmira Col
lege, Elmira, NY, August 4-6, 2005.
—-“Jean Renoir’s Southern Agrarian Fable.” Southern Studies Forum, Roosevelt Studies Center, Middleburg, The Netherlands,
September 13-16, 2005 Ed Piacentino
—-“Humorous Subversions.” Introduction to Studies in American Humor, Defying Limits: Subversive Humor in the Texts of American Minorities and Women, in Studies in American Humor 3.12 (2005): 47-51
—-“Southwest Humor’s Magnum Opus.” Studies in American Humor 3.12 (2005): 121-30 Forthcoming Publications:
—-The Enduring Legacy of Old Southwest Humor. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State UP, 2006
——”Second Chances: Patterns of Failure and Redemption in Tim Gautreaux’s Same Place, Same Things,” Southern Literary
Journal 38..1 (Fall 2005): 117-35
Pollin, Burton. rev.: Richard Restak, Poe’s Heart and the Mountain Climber. Edgar Allen Poe Review, 6.1 (2005): 74.
Ruth D. Weston
Ruth D. Weston’s book Barry Hannah, Postmodern Romantic, which was first published by LSU Press (1998), has sold out but is now available in paperback, in a Print-on-Demand edition made possible by UP of Mississippi. It is available through Amazon. com for $20.00, and Amazon says it ships in 24 hours.
SELECTED RECENT SCHOLARSHIP IN SOUTHERN LITERATURE
The African-American Review
Lewis, Nghana tamu. “The Rhetoric of Mobility, the Politics of Consciousness: Julia Mood Peterkin and the Case of a Black White Writer.” 38.4 (2005): 589-608
Okonkow, Christopher N. “A Critical Divination: Read ing Sula as Ogbanje-Abiku.” 38.4 (2005): 651 -668
Hayes, Elizabeth T. “The Named and the Nameless: Morrison’s 124 and Naylor’s “the Other Place” as Semiotic Chorae.” 38.4 (2005): 669-681
American Literary History
Kennedy, J. Gerald. “A Mania for Composition: Poe’s Annus Mirabilis and the Violence of Nation- building.” 17.2 (2005): 1-35
Richards, Eliza. “US Civil War Print Culture and Popu lar Imagination.” 17.2 (2005): 349-359
Anthony, David. “Banking on Emotion: Financial Panic and the Logic of Male Submission in the Jacksonian Gothic.” 76.4 (2004): 719-747
Carpio, Glenda R. “Conjuring the Mysteries of Slavery: Voodoo, Fetishism, and Stereotype in Ishmael Reed’s Flight to Canada.” 77.3 (2005): 563-589
Clayton, Marsha. “Stealing Time: Poe’s Confidence Men and the “Rush of the Age.” 77.2 (2005): 259-289
Fekete, Trubey Elizabeth. “Emancipating the Lettered Slave: Sentiment and Slave in Augusta Evan’s St. Elmo.” 77.1 (2005):123-150
Hosam, Aboul-Ela. “The Poetics of Peripheralization: Faulkner and the Question of the Postcolonial.” 77.3 (2005): 483-509
Richardson, Riche. “Charles Fuller’s Southern Specter and the Geography of Black Masculinity.” 77.1 (2005):7- 32
Garabedian, Steven. “Reds, Whites, and the Blues: Lawrence Gellert, “Negro Songs of Protest,” and the Leftwing Folk-Song Revival of the 1930s and 1940s.” 57.1 (2005): 179-206
The Faulkner Journal
Campbell, Erin, E. “Sad Generationis Seeking Water”: The Social Construction of Madness in O(phelia) and Q(uentin Compson). 20.1 (2004): 53-70
Dobbs, Cynthia. “Ruin or Landmark: Black Bodies as Lieux de Memoire in The Sound and The Fury.” 20.1 (2004): 35-52
Gaylord, Joshua. “The Radiance of the Fake: Pylon’s Post modern Narrative of Disease.”
20.1 (2004): 177-198
Goldstein, Phillip. “Black Feminism and the Canon: Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom! and Morri son’s Beloved as Gothic Romances.”
20.1 (2004): 133-148
Gwin, Minrose C. Racia. “Wounding the Aesthetics of Middle Voice in Absalom, Absalom! and Go Down, Moses.” 20.1 (2004): 21-34
Lurie, Peter. “Queering the Modernist Canon: Historical Con sciousness and the Sexuality of Suffering in Faulkner and Hart Crane.” 20.1 (2004): 149-176
Schreiber, Evelyn Jaffe. “Memory Believes Before Knowing Remembers: The Insistence of the Past and Lacaan’s Unconscious Desire in Light in August.” 20.1 (2004): 71-84
Sharpe, Peter. “Bonds that Shackle: Memory , Violence, and Freedom in The Unvanquised.” 20.1 (2004): 85-110
Wulfman, Cliffor E. “The Poetics of Ruptured Mnemosis: Telling Encounters in Wiliam Faulkner’s Absalom,
Absalom!” 20.1 (2004): 111-132
SELECTED RECENT SCHOLARSHIP IN SOUTHERN LITERATURE
The Mississippi Quarterly
Eddy, Charmaine. “Labor, Economy, and Desire: Rethink
ing American Nationhood Through Yoknapatawpha.” 57.3 (2004): 569-592
Frankwitz, Andrea K. “Katherine Ann Porter’s Miranda Stories: A Commentary on the Cultural Ideologies of Gender Identity.” 57.3 (2004): 473-488
Haddox, Thomas F. “Something Haphazard and Botched: Flannery O’Connor’s Critique of the Visual in “Parker’s Back.”” 57.3 (2004): 407-422
Hagood, Taylor. “Prokjickin’, or mekin’ a present to yo’ fam’ly: Rereading Empowerment in Thomas Nelson Page’s Frame Narratives.” 57.3 (2004): 423-440
Kodat, Catherine Gunther. “Posting Yoknapatawpha.” 57.3 (2004): 593-618
McHaney, Thomas L. “First Is Jefferson: Faulkner Shapes his Domain.” 57.4 (2004): 511-534
Murphy, Jim. “Recognizing the Step: Rodney Jones and the Southern Speaking Poem.” 57.3 (2004): 389-406
Nadal, Maria. “Variations on the Grotesque: From Poe’s “The Black Cat” to Oatse’s “The White Cat”.” 57.3 (2004): 455-472
Smith, Diana. “Cultural Studies’ Misfit: White Trash Studies.” 57.3 (2004): 369-388
Spillers, Hortnese J. “Topographical Topics: Faulknerian Space.” 57.3 (2004): 535-568
Stein, Allen. “Kate Chopin’s “A Pair of Black Stockings”: The Marital Burden and the Lure of Consumerism.” 57.3 (2004): 357-368
Taylor, Art. “Magical Realism and the Mississippi Delta.” 57.3 (2004): 441-454
Urgo, Joseph R. “The Yoknapatawpha Project: The Map of a Deeper Existence.” 57.3 (2004): 639-660
Zeitlin, Michael. “The Uncanny and the OpaqueinYoknapa tawpha and Beyond.” 57.3 (2004): 619-638
The Southern Literary Journal
Bradley, Patricia L. “The Birth of Tragedy and The Awaken ing: Influences and Intertextualities.” 37.2 (2005): 40-61
Carpenter, Brian R. “A Splendor Never Known: Walker Percy and Historic Preservation.” 37.2 (2005): 103-118
Ramsey, William M. “Knowing Their Place: Three Black Writers and the Postmodern South.” 37.2 (2005): 119-139
Folks, Jeffrey J. “Edgar Allan Poe and Elias Canetti: Illumi nating the Sources of Terror.” 37.2 (2005): 1-16
Lombardy, Anthony. “Allen Tate and the Metaphysics of Metaphor.” 37.2 (2005): 62-80
Hooker, Deborah Anne. “Reanimating the Trope of the Talk ing Book in Alice Walker’s “Strong Horse Tea.” 37.2 (2005): 81-102
Martin, Gretchen. “A Louisiana Swamp Doctor Diagnosis: Romantic Fatality and the Frontier Roots of Real ism.” 37.2 (2005): 17-39
The Southern Review
Burt, John. “A Note on “Uncertain Season in High Country”.” 41.2 (2005): 243-250
Do you have ideas for future Newsletters? If so, let us hear from you!
We welcome your ideas and suggestions for the Newsletter, and we thank all those who have contributed to past issues. What would you like to see in future issues? We are especially interested in articles, essays, book reviews—any piece of writing you’d like to submit for consideration. Just drop us a line at the University of Arkansas, Kimpel Hall 333, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Time to Renew Your Membership?
In order to remain current and continue receiving SSSL notifications, please fill out and return the form on page 12 today! Also, be sure to renew your membership dues.
Please send your new address (include both physical and email addresses) to:
Jeff Abernathy, Dean of the College, Professor of English, Augustana College, 639 38th Street,
Rock Island, Illinois 61201.
Or email: email@example.com
Putting Membership Fees to Good Use
Some members have asked why they should support the SSSL through dues now that the newsletter is available online for free.
Former SSSL President, Bill Andrews, provides the following rationale:
* Registration fees for our conferences are kept low to encourage graduate student attendance, and we use dues to cover conference expenses that the fees don’t cover.
* Dues paying members can register for the biennial conference at a reduced rate, which non-members do not get when they register.
* The Newsletter still has expenses: we pay a webmaster for his work. The Newsletter also has a graduate student editorial assistant at the U of Arkansas who has to be compensated for her work.
* The work of the Bibliography Committee also requires technical support which in the past a single person (now retired) used to do for the Society at no cost. The labor required to input, download, and collate all the information the Bibliography Committee compiles in the future will require financial compensation.
* The work of the Society, though it has no paid staff, requires occasional technical and/or secretarial labor that must be compensated, e.g., the audit of the Society’s financial records that we have hired a student to do.
To Become a Member Or Renew Membership:
Print off this form and fill out the following information. Mail this form, with a check for $10 made out to the Society for the Study of Southern Literature, to Jeff Abernathy, Dean of the College, Professor of English, Augustana College, 639 38th Street, Rock Island, Illinois, 61201.
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For Inclusion in the Upcoming SSSL Newsletter:
Please mail submissions to:
Dr. Robert Brinkmeyer, SSSLN Editor Department of English, University of Arkansas 333 Kimpel Hall, Fayetteville, AR 72701
Or E-mail to: [firstname.lastname@example.org]
DEADLINE FOR FALL 2005 ISSUE: November 15, 2005
Please include your name and affiliation. Submit information in any of the following categories.
- News items from SSSL president, officers, panel organizers
- Books or articles published recently (please provide complete citation)
- Teaching Southern literature—special notices
- Requests for information
- Awards or other distinctions
- Calls for papers
- News of graduate studies
- Other items of interest to SSSL membersIf you are organizing a panel for upcoming conferences/symposia, please provide complete information.