Volume 41, Issue 2, May 2008

From the Editor:

What a jam-packed issue this one is, perhaps the upshot of what I believe was a really exciting SSSL convention in Williamsburg earlier this month. Susan Donaldson and her assistants deserve a huge thanks for not only ensuring the convention took place at all, but also for making it such a resounding success. Let’s keep the enthusiasm and momentum going, in regard to both the Newsletter’s Fall issue and the 2010 New Orleans convention. I am certainly aiming to be there.

In this Spring Newsletter, graduate students, Noah Mass (University of Texas, Austin) and Sarah Walden (University of Mississippi) have very generously written of their experiences of Williamsburg. I hope more graduate students use the Newsletter as a forum to engage with the broader community of Southernists. And, Martyn Bone, whom many of you know, writes about the trials and successes of H-Southern-Lit as it nears its first anniversary. The network is a wonderful resource, which I think we can make more and better use of.

I also want to introduce you to the Newsletter’s new editorial assistant, University of Sydney graduate student, Katherine Barnsley, who is writing her doctoral dissertation on Twain, Crane, Faulkner and the Civil War. Katherine has been invaluable in compiling the Newsletter’s contents on my behalf, as I am kept busy writing new courses, including an Honours seminar on the U.S. South. I shall keep you posted. My new position here at the University of Sydney meant that I had to pull out of this year’s conference—a great shame for all sorts of reasons, not least of all missing out on catching up with colleagues I’ve
met in recent years at conferences, as a visiting scholar and also electronically. But, I am looking forward to participating in the Southern Literature panel, organised by Tara Powell, at RMMLA in October, in Reno.

As winter draws nigh in this neck of the woods, and as my fellow antipodean Americanists prepare for the Australian/New Zealand American Studies Association conference in July— which I encourage you to attend in 2010. I’m sure we could get a nice Southern panel up—I wish you all a safe and happy summer break.

All the best,

Sarah Gleeson-White

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Department of English, University of Sydney, nSW 2006 Australia Tel: (61) (2) 9351 2391 email: s.gleeson-white@usyd.edu.au

A Message from the SSSL President

Greetings from Williamsburg, where we’re bracing ourselves for graduation weekend after a busy and sometimes hectic semester, capped off by a very successful SSSL conference, which drew the largest attendance to date—a total of 186 registrants plus our plenary speakers. Of that total 52 were graduate students, including, I’m proud to say, ten from William and Mary, as well as impressively large groups from both the University of Mississippi and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

It was also an expensive conference, especially for graduate students, since Williamsburg’s tourist attractions come with a high price tag. With this consideration in mind, the SSSL Executive Council has agreed to implement a travel grant competition for participating graduate students, beginning with this conference. Four travel grants of $500 each, two named for Mississippi Quarterly editor and Faulknerian Noel Polk and two named for Peggy Whitman Prenshaw, preeminent Welty specialist and past SSSL president, will be awarded to graduate students participating in the competition who submit full copies of the papers they presented at the Williamsburg SSSL conference for consideration by an examining committee. Students who had to travel more than fifty miles to attend the conference and who want to participate in the competition should send copies of their papers in MS Word attachments to Susan Donaldson at svdona@wm.edu by June 1. Winners will be announced in late June. For subsequent competitions and conferences, we’ll send out a notice asking for submissions of full papers well in advance of the conference to aid students in travel expenses. Our next conference, incidentally, is scheduled for 2010 in New Orleans, and Rebecca Mark of Tulane University and Barbara Ewell of Loyola University have agreed to serve as co-organizers. Stay tuned for future announcements on what will undoubtedly turn out to be an exciting gathering in a beleaguered city that deserves our organization’s support.

In the meantime, if you’re interested in contributing to an edited collection of essays based on papers presented at the Williamsburg SSSL conference, please let me know by the end of June. Considering the high quality of the papers presented at the conference and the energy and excitement that so many of the sessions generated, I think we can put together a lively and highly provocative collection of essays pointing out new directions in southern cultural studies, and happily my fellow program committee members—Eric Anderson, Suzanne Jones, and Roberta Rosenberg—have agreed to serve as co-editors. Hence I am asking that those interested in turning their papers into full-fledged essays, 6,000–8,000 words in length, including documentation, contact me at svdona@ wm.edu by June 30. To keep the momentum of the conference going, I’m setting September 30 as the deadline for submission of full essays in MS Word attachments.

While you’re considering that possibility, you may also want to keep in mind the SSSL session that our colleague Tara Powell of the University of South Carolina, Columbia, has organized for the American Literature Association in San Francisco, May 22–25—on ‘Expatriate Literature of the American South.’. Scheduled as session 5-J, the presentations include the following:

1. ‘Beyond the Belle’s Borders: Fitzgerald’s Americanization of White Southern Femininity in The Great Gatsby’ —Allison Ruth Caviness, University of Virginia.

2. ‘The Northernmost South: Landscape, Poetics, and the Almost-Expatriate’ —Tessa Joseph Nicholas, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

3. ‘Robert Penn Warren’s Conversion Narrative’ —Ernest Suarez, Catholic University of America.

4. ‘Race, Modernism, and the Conditions of Comparison: Gilberto Freyre’s U.S. South’ —Sarah Ann Wells, University of California, Berkeley.

It promises to be an exciting session, and Tara has agreed to serve as SSSL’s liaison to ALA for next year as well.

From Emory University, Barbara Ladd, our liaison to MLA, reports that SSSL’s two MLA sessions will focus on ‘Obscenity Law and Censorship in the U.S. South’ and ‘Psychoanalysis, Segregation, and the Sign.’. Barbara will chair the former, which will feature talks by Alan Ackerman of the University of Toronto, Erik Bachman of the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Robert Jackson of University of Virginia. The latter will be chaired by Leigh Anne Duck of the University of Memphis and will feature presentations by Elizabeth Abel of the University of California, Berkeley, Brian Normon of Loyola College, Maryland, and John Matthews of Boston University.

On a final note, I’d like to congratulate our latest C. Hugh Holman prize-winner, Margaret Bradham Thornton, an independent scholar who won the award for her editing of Notebooks: Tennessee Williams, issued by Yale University Press. I’d also like to congratulate my colleague down the road, M. Thomas Inge of Randolph-Macon College
in Ashland, Virginia, for winning the Richard Beale Davis Award for his lifetime contributions in the service of southern letters. I had the pleasure of presenting the awards to Dr. Thornton at MLA in Chicago and to Professor Inge at the Williamsburg SSSL conference..Both award winners were selected after considerable care and time

by hard-working SSSL committees—Julia Eichelberger of the College of Charleston headed up the Holman Prize committee and Jim Watkins of Berry College chaired the Davis Prize committee. My hearty thanks go to both committees for jobs well done.

Most of all, though, I’d like to thank SSSL members who helped make our recent conference so invigorating and exciting. Without the terrific papers you produced–and the immense energy you brought—we couldn’t have put on the successful meeting that we did.

Susan V. Donaldson

College of William and Mary

Notes From The Field

INVENTING H-SOUTHERN-LIT Martyn Bone, University of Copenhagen

The SSSL-sponsored H-Net discussion network H-Southern-Lit is almost a year old and has, at the time of writing, some 186 members (so a quick look at the network’s electronic editorial “dashboard” tells me). The H-Net organization is based at Michigan State University and is comprised of more than one hundred electronic discussion networks, some of which are now more than a decade old, and all of which are dedicated to disseminating information and generating discussion about the humanities and social sciences. (See www.h-net.org for further information.)

I first broached the idea of setting up an H-Net network for southern literature at an SSSL executive council meeting at the conference in Birmingham in April 2006. There were murmurs of approval from fellow council members, but at the time I envisioned it rather vaguely as a project to be taken up by, well, enthusiastic graduate students. In the months following the Birmingham conference, I began to feel a certain guilty sense that I could and should be doing more during my two-year stint on the executive council—not always easy when one is based in Europe and therefore misses key meetings and conferences on the ground in the U.S. As such, I decided I should push things forward myself by getting in touch with H-Net.

I was already a long-standing subscriber to a number of H-Net discussion networks: H-Amstdy (American studies), H-Afro-Am (African American studies), and H-South (more on that name in a moment!). I was aware, then, of the impressive institutional setup and support an SSSL-sponsored network could gain from affiliation to H-Net. And H-Net’s expertise seemed especially valuable whenever I ruefully recalled Veronica Makowksy’s brave but doomed attempt to set up an SSSL mailing list in about 2001. I was at the time a twentysomething grad student: it was by turns amusing and bemusing to be receiving emails from certain southern lit luminaries complaining that they kept getting all these odd emails from people. The problem was that said luminaries and others kept sending emails complaining about other emails back to the whole list, rather than to Veronica as moderator.

At some point that well-meaning experiment was mercifully cut short—but its failure always seemed a shame to me. Some five years later I still felt that an electronic discussion network about southern literature would be of particular value to scholars outside the U.S.—such as myself—who might otherwise be struggling to keep up-to-date with developments in the field. More mischievously, I also felt that some southern southernists (for want of a better phrase) might usefully avoid the perils of Quentissentialism (as Michael Kreyling once called it) if they had a forum for more dialogue with the Shreves of southern studies dotted around the world.

With all this in mind, then, I approached H-Net in late 2006 about starting up a new discussion network. It has to be said that the initial response from H-Net was not altogether enthusiastic: it was pointed out that there was already a discussion network called H-South, and that few H-Net lists are focused on literature. I had to make the case, then, that H-South was limited because, despite its definitive-sounding title, it focused almost entirely on southern history. I also suggested that a southern lit network could work together with other H-Net networks, generating discussions across and between lists: not only H-South but also H-Afro-Am, H-Amstdy, or H-Southern-Music. And after all, if southern music merits its own network (which it certainly does), then surely so does southern literature?

Ultimately, the H-Net staff—especially Matthew Gilmore, the vice-president of H-Net who did the most to help us set up H-Southern-Lit—were supportive and sympathetic. After submitting various documents and meeting certain

standard requirements, we were given the green light. Because H-Net regulations required a number of editors, I secured three brilliant colleagues—Melanie Benson, Annette Trefzer, and Lisa Hinrichsen—as co-editors and (in Lisa’s case) book reviews editor.

We were ready to launch in June 2007. H-Net activated a well designed webpage (http://www.h-net.org/~southlit/)
and sent out a launch announcement to all its other networks, as did Jeff Abernathy to SSSL members. For a while, subscription surveys to H-Southern-Lit came in at a pretty nifty pace. Within a few days we had about 40 subscribers: this wasn’t quite the stupendous growth-rate of another recent launch, H-Memory, which attracted around 300 subscribers in a week, but it wasn’t bad going. However, subscription rates were somewhat disappointing over the next few months—not least among the SSSL membership. As the editor responsible for managing subscriptions, I was struck by how many subscribers were coming from other, related areas: southern historians, scholars in African American studies, American lit specialists. By contrast, there were not as many southern lit specialists and SSSL members as I—we—had hoped.

Nevertheless, as the subscription numbers grew over the next few months (we passed 150 subscribers in November
2007), the network became increasingly active. At the most basic level, H-Southern-Lit allows subscribers to distribute conference calls for papers, call for submissions to planned books and journal issues, and notifications of upcoming events. Increasingly, then, H-Southern-Lit is being utilized to communicate this kind of information directly to the community of scholars working in the field. More interestingly, however, H-Southern-Lit is generating some valuable discussions across countries, continents, disciplines and “party lines”—and in a way that more old-fashioned media simply cannot. Some
of the most engaging debates in recent months have derived from apparently low-key questions—for example, before Christmas, UT Austin grad student Noah Mass submitted a query about the capitalization of “s” in “southern”/“Southern” that generated a lot of interesting, varied, and more-or-less serious replies. More recently, Jon Smith asked for input on
the prospect of teaching southern studies at a cutting-edge college in Canada: it was great to see folks ranging from Richard King in Nottingham to Sarah Gleeson-White in Sydney to Annette Trefzer, a German-born southernist based
in Mississippi, weighing in with their thoughts. (By contrast, some of my own possibly ham-fisted attempts to generate discussion—about, say, the film version of No Country for Old Men or the merits of different journals—seem to have gone down like a lead balloon. Oh well.)

One of the clear benefits of H-Net discussion networks is the ability to distribute book reviews directly to exactly the right audience—and to do so quickly. So far, Lisa Hinrichsen has piloted the publication of very valuable reviews
of Riché Richardson’s Black Masculinity and the U.S. South (reviewed by Michael Bibler); Leigh Anne Duck’s The Nation’s Region (Katie McKee); Katie Henninger’s Ordering the Facade (Mary Weaks-Baxter); Paul Christian Jones’ Unwelcome Voices (Steven Knepper); and Hosam Aboul-Ela’s Other South (Maddy Kotowicz). Lisa has many more reviews in the pipeline, and we hope in future to make use of another notable benefit of the H-Net system: the opportunity to publish dialogues between reviewers and authors of the books under review.

A year in, then, H-Southern-Lit has established itself fairly effectively. Still, it could that much more valuable if more SSSL members were to subscribe to what is, after all, an SSSL-sponsored network, and the only such electronic network dedicated to southern literature. When I first raised the idea of H-Southern-Lit, Robert Phillips talked enthusiastically about the network becoming the premiere way for SSSL to communicate information to its members. This cannot and will not happen unless more SSSL members sign up and make the most of H-Southern-Lit. So, if you have not done so already, please check out the H-Southern-Lit website (it includes logs of earlier discussions and book reviews), and send us that subscription survey so we can get you on board!

Community and Scholarship at SSSL 2008

Noah Mass, University of Texas, Austin

Prior to the 2008 conference of the Society for the Study of Southern Literature, I’d been reading and contributing to a listserv, “H-Southern-Lit.” As I was just about the only graduate student at my University
who was working on southern literature, I was gratified to be introduced to a community of southern studies scholars, even an electronic one. Joining this particular on-line conversation was important to me because, until then, I wasn’t sure how my scholarly voice fit into the larger academic enterprise of southern studies. A thread that I initiated about a recent shift in the terms of art in the field (regarding the lower-casing of the letter “s” in “southern,” in fact), helped me to connect to many like-minded souls whom I’d never met. In a foreshadowing of things to come, some of them signed their e-mails to me, “see you in Williamsburg.”

The sense that we belong to a community of scholars, that we are part of an important and necessary dialogue with others about a common area of study, is what graduate students need to have in order to produce good work (and to finish the work that we’ve started!). At previous academic conferences I had attended a panel or two on southern studies or on a particular southern author, but I’d rarely had the opportunity to attend a national conference solely devoted to the field that I’d been trying to make my own. My 2008 SSSL experience was when the virtual southern studies community became a real one for me.

I arrived on the first day, tired and worn out from a red-eye flight that began early that morning. But I made it
to the conference in time for a panel discussion on “Theory’s Travels: Dis/Locating Methods in U.S. Southern Studies.” As the leading lights of the field (heroes of mine like Martyn Bone and Leigh Anne Duck) presented their ideas about the current state of southern literary theory, I felt as though I was, at last, in the right place at the right time. Those scholars gave some remarkable presentations, but the audience reaction to their work and to that of fellow panelists Scott Romine, Jon Smith, and Lisa Henrichson was hardly fawning. The attendees engaged in a lively dialogue with the presenters, and I realized then that this conference was a real opportunity to exchange ideas with major scholars in an open atmosphere, with everyone ready and willing to have their say.

When I presented my own paper (on Richard Wright’s Black Boy) the following day, I saw arrayed before me those same faces from the previous day’s panel, all waiting for me to show them what I could do. I felt rather like a jazz musician playing in public for the first time, with the established names in the field expecting me
to hit notes that they’d not yet heard. However, those whose work had inspired me in the first place were all overwhelmingly encouraging and supportive of what I was doing, and I was given only positive and helpful feedback—and this from writers whose work I was citing in my paper (a startling experience, to say the least). I came to understand then, if I hadn’t already, how our field is both collegial and intellectually challenging, and how its leading figures want to improve it by bringing newcomers like myself into their circle of professionalization.

The conference left me with the feeling that I wasn’t just toiling alone, firing off intellectual missiles into the void, but participating in a dialogue with fellow southern studies scholars—both established professionals and graduate students like myself. In a panel on Michael Kreyling’s work, Kreyling himself, as respondent, helped to affirm this point. He acknowledged in his remarks that, when his Inventing Southern Literature (a text that has been a foundational one for me and for so many others) first appeared in 1999, the field of southern studies was

“dying. It was on life support.” Looking around him at the field as it now stood, he had to admit what we and others in academia generally are acknowledging: southern studies has recovered, and those of us in the field are working with one another to continue revitalizing it.

In the afterglow of SSSL, I now see traces of southern studies presence everywhere. Two weeks after my return, I attended a conference sponsored by the International Association for the Study of Narrative. There, Steven Weisenburger presented a paper on the rhetorical and historical controversy surrounding Philadelphia, Mississippi’s Neshoba County Fair, where Ronald Reagan had kick-started his 1980 Presidential campaign. As remarkable and thought-provoking as his paper was, I found myself wishing that my newfound colleagues could have heard it as well, so readily did it lend itself to the vital issues at stake in contemporary southern studies.

Perhaps this is the legacy of SSSL for me: a recognition that my own circle has expanded, that my ideas are worth sharing, and that my work can be a vital component in a larger scholarly conversation. By our next conference, I’m sure that the dialogue in which I now share will have grown only more exciting.

SSSL 2008: A Graduate Student’s Perspective

Sarah W. Walden, University of Mississippi

I have been raving about this conference to anyone who asked (and, I’ll admit, a few who haven’t) since I returned to Oxford, so I was thrilled when Sarah Gleeson-White asked me to write about my experience as a graduate student at what we at UM have lovingly (and efficiently) termed “Triple-S-L.”

Six graduate students from the University of Mississippi presented papers at this conference, and, being students, we were afraid we would be on the fringes of the action. Not ignored, per se, but maybe asked to
make a few copies or grab a coffee for one of our academic rock stars. I’m only slightly kidding—we had no idea what to expect. We were afraid because there were so many of us that we’d be one giant Ole Miss flotilla, viewed only as a group and unable to create individual identities for ourselves. This turned out to be as far
from our experience as possible. Everyone was extremely welcoming and encouraging, and by the second day
of the conference I noticed when I arrived at the Hospitality House that I was less likely to find my fellow grad students talking to one another than to the author of a recent work of scholarship they had enjoyed. While this may seem like a minor accomplishment, as a young student, the hurdle from stipend to salary seems nearly insurmountable, and being treated as a colleague by an influential scholar in your field makes you feel that many steps closer. I’m sure you all remember this.

We each received excellent questions and feedback, and I was impressed by the level of interest in our projects, especially by the scholars we had used in our work. I was placed on a panel with Melanie Benson and Martyn Bone, whose Postsouthern Sense of Place in Contemporary Fiction formed the basis of my paper on global southern foodways, and to quote the person sitting one foot away from you is a bit nerve-wracking, to say the least. But both were not only gracious but supportive panel members, and I enjoyed spending time with them throughout the conference.

This was one of the best conferences for graduate students I’ve ever attended. We loved the friendly informality (and the great food) at the receptions. The panels were well-organized and motivating. I know I can speak for all of us when I say that we returned to school re-energized in our studies and more confident about our abilities in our specialty areas. I’ve spoken thus far only about the students who attended from the University of Mississippi, but I met many other students from various institutions, such University of Texas-Austin, Emory, Penn State, and others, who were excited to be at the conference and who were thrilled at the level of genuine interest in their studies. Thank you, and we are already planning our submissions for the New Orleans conference!

SSSL Bibliography

The SSSL Bibliography has long been an important source of information for anyone who studies Southern Literature. First published as a bound volume and then as a supplement to the Mississippi Quarterly, the Bibliography has been on-line since 2003 at http://www.missq.msstate.edu/sssl/.

The Bibliography Committee is attempting to ensure that our coverage is as complete as possible, and we hope that you will be able to help in our efforts. Would you be willing to check the Bibliography for coverage of your own work? Please let us know if you find gaps. We would appreciate your compiling a list of missing publications and, if possible, writing annotations for those items.

Annotations for the Bibliography can be written in complete sentences or in fragments, and should be roughly
3 sentences in length. Direct quotations may be included in the annotation. We are asking that all bibliographical information follow MLA Style. Entries may be submitted directly through the Bibliography website through “Want to contribute? Send us your annotations!” located on the home page or via e-mail to me at: mweaks-baxter@rockford.edu.

Finally, if you are interested in working on the Bibliography Committee, we also have a couple of openings. I’d be glad to send you additional details about what we do.

Mary Weaks-Baxter
Chair, SSSL Bibliography Committee

CALLS FOR PAPERS

Welty Centennial Conference April 16–19 2009

Planning for the Eudora Welty Society Centennial Conference in Jackson, Mississippi, 2009, is underway. This academic conference will run in conjunction and collaboration with the Southern Literary Festival that will offer events and readings by Natasha Trethewey, Ann Patchett, William

Jay Smith, and others. Additional artistic tributes honoring Eudora Welty on her 100th birthday will be held in the evenings, including a performance by the Jackson Symphony. Please send your statements of intent now and 500-word proposals for papers

by September 1, 2008 to Harriet Pollack, Bucknell University at pollack@bucknell.edu

SASA 2009
Beginnings and Renewals: Locating American Studies
Southern American Studies Association Biennial Meeting
George Mason University
Fairfax, Virginia
February 12–14, 2009

The 2009 biennial meeting of the Southern American Studies Association will be held on the campus of George Mason University in the heart of northern Virginia, a longstanding yet ever-changing site

of transatlantic, multiethnic, colonial, urban, and cosmopolitan American beginnings and renewals. About fifteen miles from downtown Washington, DC, and within a few miles of Arlington, Mount Vernon, the Pentagon, Old Town Alexandria, and much more, northern Virginia is a place where the “old” and the “new” continue to meet and reinvent each other.

The Washington, DC, metropolitan area is famous for its many iconic, monumental fashionings of

U.S. national identity and cultural memory. But this is of course also a region of tremendous fluidity, a place full of surprises and crisscrossed by routes—of trade, labor, government, law, media, languages, cultures— that continue to be negotiated, constructed, mapped, traveled, toured, enforced, and contested. SASA 2009 offers us an opportunity to consider how these and other networks provoke both connections and disconnections among the local, the federal, the regional, the national, the hemispheric, and the global. We’ll also investigate how routes and roots help us understand beginnings and renewals and help us undertake the work of locating American studies in place, space, and time.

We invite our colleagues in American Studies, Southern Studies, and all related fields of study and areas of interest to join us as we investigate these and other ways of locating American Studies. While we welcome proposals addressing the conference theme and are always happy to consider proposals investigating the South, broadly defined, this conference is open to anyone interested in contributing to the interdisciplinary study of American cultures.

Keynote Speaker: ASA President-Elect Philip Deloria, University of Michigan

Please send 2-3 page session proposals and/or one-page individual paper abstracts as MS Word attachments
to Eric Gary Anderson at George Mason University: eandersd@gmu.edu. The deadline for proposals is October 15, 2008.

Conference attendees may be listed in the conference program as participants in a maximum of two sessions. While we welcome a range of panel formats, we
ask that panels be designed so that they fit within a 75-minute time frame with at least 15 minutes dedicated to discussion.

As always, graduate students are especially encouraged to attend and present papers. SASA’s Critoph Prize, an award for the best graduate student paper presented at

the conference, includes a certificate and a check for $250 as well as recognition at the next SASA meeting. Possible topics for session and individual paper proposals include (but are not limited to):

  • American Indian roots and routes
  • Colonial and/or other “beginnings”
  • Urban and/or other “renewals”
  • New iterations of American Studies
  • Formations and deformations of Americancommunities/neighborhoods
  • Growth, sprawl, development, reclamation:cities, suburbs, exurbs, industries
  • Waterways and waterfronts; ports andmaritime culture
  • Transatlantic/colonial encounters on the Easternseaboard
  • Early African American history and culture
  • Geographics and natural history
  • Representing and contesting slavery
  • Travel and tourism, domestic and international, thenand now
  • Contested representations of American Indians
  • Public cultures
  • Forms of material culture
  • Ethnic and multiethnic beginnings, renewals,and/or locations
  • Memory, commemoration, amnesia
  • Secrets, disguises, covert identities
  • Museums and/or monuments
  • Animals/Animal Rights
  • Music and musicology
  • Ethnic enclaves in the South, the mid-Atlantic, and/or the U.S.
  • Film and media studies
  • Cultural traumas and contested histories
  • Performances, theatrical representations, festivals,public spectacles
  • Photography and national memory/identity
  • Politics, government, public affairs
  • Literatures of beginnings and renewals
  • Transatlantic or transnational literary andcultural relations
  • Teaching the roots and routes of New SouthernStudies

• Teaching American Studies in various contexts, settings, etc.

• Remaking Native American identities and communities

• Borderlands in the South
• Contesting notions of region and/or regionalism • Writing/working against the slave trade
• Disrupting antebellum/postbellum or other

historical/cultural paradigms
• Law and American Studies
• Locating American Studies in various institutional

and other settings
• Americans/America/American studies abroad • Postcolonial Theory and U.S. federal law,

government, foreign policy, etc.
• ASA 2008 follow-ups about “Integrative American

Studies in Theory and Practice”
• SSSL 2008 follow-ups about “Southern Roots

and Routes”

North Carolina Literary Review

The North Carolina Literary Review is seeking submissions for the 2009 issue’s special feature section on North Carolina Drama. Submissions might include interviews with North Carolina dramatists, literary criticism on North Carolina drama, and original short plays. Deadline for submission to the special feature section is August 31, 2008.

Prior to the deadline, you are welcome to email proposals to the editor, Margaret Bauer,
at BauerM@ecu.edu.

Mail completed submissions to: Dr. Margaret D. Bauer, Editor North Carolina Literary Review Department of English

2201 Bate Bldg.
East Carolina University Greenville, NC 27858-4353

For more information about the North Carolina Literary Review, go to www.ecu.edu/nclr

EVENTS & PUBLICATIONS

The Incredible Mr. Poe:
Edgar Allan Poe in the Comics An Exhibition

In 1941, Russian immigrant, Albert Lewis Kanter, tried to introduce young people in the United States to fine literature by incorporating the classics into something they were already reading: comic books. In 1944, “The Murders in the Rue Morgue” appeared in Kanter’s Classic Comics series, and ever since adaptations of both Poe and his works have been regular features in comic books and graphic novels, many of which will be on display from April 24 to October 31, 2008 at the Edgar Allan Poe Museum

in Richmond (www.poemuseum.org). Poe has even appeared as a comics’ hero himself, alongside Batman and Scooby Doo.

M. Thomas Inge, Blackwell Professor of Humanities at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Virginia, and Poe Foundation trustee, has studied comic art for over forty years and published several books

on the subject. His collection of comic books from childhood will form the core of the upcoming exhibition which is curated by Richmond artist, Chris Semtner.

Also featured will be original artwork by such comic artists and illustrators as Rick Geary, Richard Corben, Gahan Wilson, Gris Grimly, Bill Griffith, and Patrick McDonnell, as well as proof sheets and original pages for some of the Classics Illustrated and other comic book versions loaned by collector Jim Vacca of Boulder, Colorado. An illustrated book and catalog will be available for purchase from the Museum Gift Shop with proceeds going
to the Museum.

This will be the first exhibition ever devoted to the comic books and graphic narratives that have helped keep Poe’s name and works in the public eye for

over sixty years. An opening reception will be held Thursday evening, April 24, 7:00 to 10:00 p.m., with an Unhappy Hour, food, and music, free and open to the public.

The Edgar Allan Poe Museum is located at: 1914 East Main Street,
Richmond, Virginia 2322
phone 804 648-5523

For more information contact Rebecca Jones at becca@poemuseum.org or
call toll free 888 21EAPOE.

North Carolina Literary Review

The 2008 issue of the North Carolina Literary Review, with a special feature section on Humor, will include for subscribers a dual CD-set of readings by some of North Carolina’s most hilarious humorists, including Allan Gurganus, Jill McCorkle, and David Sedaris. For more information, see www. ecu.edu/nclr Single issue sales that mention this notice will also receive the CDs.

The Southern Quarterly

Sherita L. Johnson, Ph.D, Assistant Professor, African American Literature Department of English, University of Southern Mississippi, will be serving as Guest Editor of the upcoming Spring 2008 issue of The Southern Quarterly, entitled “’My Southern Home’: The Lives and Literature of 19th- Century Southern Black Writers”.

Collectively, the essays in this issue present reasons why and how nineteenth-century southern black writers position themselves in a chaotic historical period that not only threatened their lives at times but also undermined their ability to identify with Southernness, a group affiliation whose importance we have not yet recognized. As Southerners, they wrote against racial injustices while exposing the potential erasure of their cultural identities.

Professor Johnson can be contacted at: Department of English,
University of Southern Mississippi 118 College Drive #5037

Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001 (601)266-4068 (601)266-5757 (fax)

Emmett Till in Literary Memory
and Imagination
Harriet Pollack and Christopher Metress, eds. (LSU Press, 2008)

The horrific 1955 slaying of fourteen-year-old Emmett Till marks a significant turning point in the history of American race relations. The eleven essays in Emmett Till in Literary Memory and Imagination examine how the narrative of the Till lynching continues to haunt racial consciousness and to resonate in our collective imagination. The international group of contributors to this volume explores how the Emmett Till story has been fashioned and refashioned in fiction, poetry, drama and autobiography. They suggest the presence of an “Emmett Till narrative” deeply embedded in post-1955 literature, an overarching recurrent plot that builds on recognizable elements and is as legible as the “lynching narrative” or the “passing narrative.” Writers have fashioned Till’s story in many ways: an annotated bibliography that ends the volume discusses more than 130 works that memorialize the lynching, calling attention to the full extent of Till’s presence in literary memory.

The Letters of Edgar Allan Poe

Burton R. Pollin and Jeffrey A. Savoye, eds. (Gordian Press, 2008)

Edgar Allan Poe is one of the most iconic and enigmatic figures in American Literature. He is revered as a master of the short story and the father of modern detective fiction. His poem “The Raven”

has been translated into every major language and has entered popular culture with art renderings, musical settings, television references, and even the naming
of a professional football team. Often misunderstood by adverse critics and admirers alike, the image of
Poe as a deranged artist pouring out his life into his works has become part of American folklore. Perhaps ironically, this caricatured version of Poe has helped to attract sufficient attention to his fiction and poetry so that his major works have not been out of print since his death in 1849. The real Poe is considerably more complicated—an original thinker, stimulating essayist, and broad innovator in views on science and the arts. Even the popular conception is slowly shifting away from the well-established impressions fabricated and left to us by Poe’s literary executor and nemesis, Rufus Wilmot Griswold.

Poe’s letters form the single most important body of biographical information on the author. First printed in 1948, The Letters of Edgar Allan Poe (reprinted
in 1966, with a supplement) has remained a standard work for students of Poe’s life and writings, but has grown increasingly difficult to find and further and further out of date. As we approach the bicentennial of Poe’s birth (on January 9, 1809), the two-volume set has finally been given a thorough and much-needed revision, to be published in the next few months

by Gordian Press. All of the material originally prepared by John Ward Ostrom has been expanded and brought up to date by Burton R. Pollin and Jeffrey A. Savoye. New letters have been added, problems with previously published letters have been corrected, and existing notes have been updated using the best available research of the last four decades of Poe scholarship. The format of the books has also been reworked to improve the presentation of the material, including a generous subject index with over 2,000 entries. (All citations clearly indicate the relevant letter number, and distinguish references in the letter text from those in the letter notes. For all but a few items, subtopic descriptions have been provided to assist the reader in selecting the most relevant material.) New

appendices have been added for promissory notes and for spurious and forged material.

At over 1,400 pages (more than double the total in the original edition), the two volumes contain 422 letters
by Poe, including a number of fragments. The books are supplemented by 74 illustrations (72 in black and white, featuring portraits of Poe’s family and friends as well as a representative sampling of Poe’s manuscript letters and related material, and 2 full color portrait frontispieces).The comprehensive Check List of Poe’s Correspondence has been updated to contain over 1,000 entries, accounting for every known letter written by Poe or sent to him. (A similar Check List has been created to account for spurious and forged letters.) All in all, the new edition of Poe’s letters should prove to

be an indispensable tool for scholars and a revelation to general readers seeking a better understanding
of Poe.

Native South
New journal, Native South, challenges scholars of southern history to expand their conception of the field to include more than the black and white post-colonial south that colors much of the historical literature of
the region. The journal focuses on the investigation
of Southeastern Indian history with the goals of encouraging further study and exposing the influences of Indian people on the wider South. It does not limit itself to the study of the geographic area that was once encompassed by the Confederacy, but expands its view to the areas occupied by the pre-contact- and the post- contact descendants of the original inhabitants of the South, wherever they may be.

http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/product/ Native-South,673964.aspx

The first issue is scheduled for Fall 2008.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

AWARDS

In 2007, Margaret Bauer, Rives Chair of Southern Literature at East Carolina University, received
the Parnassus Award for Significant Editorial Achievement from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals and was named one of East Carolina University’s 10 Women of Distinction. Then in 2008, she received ECU’s “5 Year Achievement Award for Excellence in Research/ Creative Activity.”

The Society for the Study of Southern Literature has selected Professor M. Thomas Inge, Ph.D.
as this year’s recipient of the Richard Beale Davis Award for lifetime contributions to Southern letters. The award carries with it a rich history. In his lifetime, Richard Beale Davis was America’s most distinguished scholar of colonial and federal culture and literature. A native Virginian and 1927 graduate of Randolph-Macon College, Davis published scores of groundbreaking and award-winning studies.

His spirit remains a strong presence on campus, manifested in R-MC’s research library, which Davis left to the college after he died. The award was presented at the meeting of the Society at William & Mary in Williamsburg on Thursday, April 17, 2008. Inge’s most recent work, The New Encyclopedia
of Southern Culture (University of North Carolina Press, 2008) is the ninth volume in a series that explores the South’s fertile literary landscape, past and present. The book’s 31 essays pay homage to the South’s thriving literary culture as it touches
on myriad genres. A 1959 graduate of R-MC,
Inge received his Master’s degree and Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University. He is an expert on humor and pop culture and a recognized authority on comics and their impact on our culture. His vast collection of comic books will form the hub of an upcoming exhibit, “The Incredible Mr. Poe: Edgar Allan Poe.

in the Comics” at The Edgar Allan Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia. The colorful exhibit highlights Poe’s unlikely—but popular—appearance in graphic novels and comics. The exhibit runs from April 24 to October 31, 2008.

SELECTED RECENT SCHOLARSHIP IN SOUTHERN LITERATURE

ARTICLES

Adams, Amanda. “Painfully Southern: Gone with the Wind, the Agrarians, and the Battle for the New South.” The Southern Literary Journal 40.1 (2007) 58-75.

Anderson, Eric Gary. “Black Atlanta: An Ecosocial Approach to Narratives of the Atlanta Child Murders.” PMLA 122. 1 (2007). Special Topic: Cities. Coordinated by Patricia Yaeger. 194-209.

Bone, Martyn. “The (Extended) South of Black Folk: Intraregional and Transnational Migrant Labor in Jonah’s Gourd Vine and Their Eyes Were Watching God.” American Literature 79.4 (2007). 753-80.

Burt, John. “Robert Penn Warren’s The Legacy of the Civil War and the Meaning of Pragmatism.” American Literary History 19 (2007). 964-96.

Clabough, Casey, “Four Recent Novels of the Past Far and Near.” Sewanee Review 116.1 (2008). 132-39.

— “‘The Primary Story’: George Garrett’s Initiation Fiction.” Texas Review (Spring 2007).

— “Toward Feminine Mythopoetic Visions: The Poetry of Gayl Jones.” African American Review 41.1 (2007). 99-114.

— “‘The Wind Shuffled the Palm Fronds Like New Money’: George Garrett’s Florida” Journal of Florida Literature 15 (2007).

— “The Imagined South” Sewanee Review 115.2 (2007). 301-07.

— “The Truths of William Hoffman’s Fiction, New and Old.” Shenandoah 57.1 (2007). 92-100.

— and Mark Roberts. “Writing for a Place: A Writer’s Workshop for McDowell County, West Virginia.” Community Literacy Journal 2.1 (2007).

Entzminger, Betina. “Come Back to the Raft Ag’in, Ed Gentry.” The Southern Literary Journal 40.1 (2007). 98-113.

Gleeson-White, Sarah. “Playing Cowboys: Genre, Myth and Cormac McCarthy’s All the Pretty Horses.” Southwestern American Literature 33.1 (2007). 23-38.

Moon, Michael. “Wherein the South Differs from the North: Naming Persons, Naming Places,
and the Need for Visionary Geographies.”
Southern Spaces (2008) http://www.southernspaces.org/contents/2008/moon/1a. htm

Turner, Daniel Cross. “Restoration, Metanostalgia, and Critical Memory: Forms of Nostalgia in Contemporary Southern Poetry.” The Southern Literary Journal 41.2 (2008). 182-206.

— “Heterotopic Space in Andrew Hudgins’ After the Lost War.” The Southern Quarterly: A Journal of the Arts in the South 44.4 (2007). 175-95.

— “’Unburying the Dead’: Defining a Poetics of Trauma in Yusef Komunyakaa’s Poetry of Vietnam and the American South.” Genre: Forms of Discourse and Culture 39.1 (2006). 115-39.

— “Modern Primitives: Mergings in the Poetry of Robert Penn Warren and James Dickey.”
The South Carolina Review 38.2 (2006). 173-182. Reprinted in Robert Penn Warren: Genius Loves Company. Ed. Mark Royden Winchell. Clemson University Digital Press, 2007.

Wise, Benjamin E. “On Naïve and Sentimental Poetry: Nostalgia, Sex, and the Souths of William Alexander Percy”, Southern Cultures 14.1 (2008). 54-79

BOOKS

Clabough, Casey. The Art of the Magic Striptease: The Literary Layers of George Garrett,
UP of Florida, 2008.

— The Warrior’s Path: Reflections Along an Ancient Route, U of Tennessee P, 2007.

Olson,Ted and Kathy H. Olson, eds. James Still: Critical Essays on the Dean of Appalachian Literature. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland, 2007.

Inge , M. Thomas, ed. The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture, Volume 9: Literature. Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, 2008.

— The Incredible Mr. Poe: Comic Book Adaptations of the Works of Edgar Allan Poe, 1943–2007. Richmond, VA: Edgar Allan Poe Museum, 2008.

— ed. A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court. By Mark Twain. Oxford World’s Classics. Oxford and New York: Oxford UP, 2008. Paperback reissue.

— ed. William Faulkner: The Contemporary Reviews. American Critical Archives. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge UP, 2008. Paperback reissue.

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DEADLInE FOR FALL 2008 ISSUE: november 7, 2008

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