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Martin Kevorkian, Chair CAL 226, Mailcode B5000, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4991

Fall 2008

E 380F • LITERATURE FOR WRITERS/Literature in the Southwest: The 20th Century

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
35605 TTh
11:00 AM-12:30 PM
UTC 4.114

Course Description

Literature in the Southwest: The 20th Century Literature for Writers This is a course in regional writing, specifically of one region, the Southwest, and more particularly, of one state within that region: namely Texas. The view of Texas writing from abroad is not well informed. Here is a description of Southwestern writers from a mass-market paperback anthology published in the 1980s: "Some were born among the sagebrush and the mesquite trees. Others traveled here from the soot-choked cities of the East. But all write with their feet dusty from the mesas or with fingers greasy from chicken-fried steak." If authors of the Southwest are such rubes, what of their home-grown audience? This from a 1998 article in The Economist: Even educated Texans have often preferred insubstantial humour books and western pulp fiction to 'highfalutin' writing. This course will set things right by taking a close look at significant literary works written about Texas. We will read Katherine Anne Porter, Larry McMurtry, Cormac McCarthy, and Américo Paredes, along with a host of other writers who have made Texas into a literary site of their own.


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