E 395M • South by Southwest: Literature, the US South and Greater Mexico
12:30 PM-2:00 PM
The eminent historian of the U.S. South, C. Vann Woodward, has noted that the study of the U.S. South stands in great need of comparative dimensions if suitable comparative partners could be found, comparative projects, he would add, beyond the now stale North-South axis. While Woodward speaks specifically of comparative history, other disciplines could also have their comparative say in this kind of a project. This seminar will examine a significant range of distinctive yet comparable, mostly twentieth-century, American literatures produced in the U.S. South and the cultural area that Americo Paredes calls Greater Mexico encompassing not only the Republic of Mexico but also Mexicans in the United States. Following the work of Emmanuel Wallerstein, this close examination of literary texts and criticism will proceed from a broad understanding of these two regional culture areas as historically peripheral zones relative to a dominant capitalist core, even as we will also take account of direct linkages between these two areas and their peoples. However, within these broad contexts, we will engage in close analysis, if not close readings, of our texts drawing on a variety of relevant scholarship.
James C. Cobb, The Most Southern Place on Earth, (Available only at Desert books) Richard Gray, Writing the South (Available only at Desert Books) W. E. B. DuBois, The Souls of Black Folk Zora Neale Hurston (Ed. Alice Walker) I Love Myself When I am Laughing... Jovita Gonzalez, Dew on the Thorn William Faulkner,The Sound and the Fury; Absalom! Absalom! Mariano Azuela, The Underdogs Juan Rulfo, Pedro Paramo Carlos Fuentes, The Death of Artemio Cruz W. J. Cash, The Mind of the South Thomas Wolfe, You Cant Go Home Again Americo Paredes, George Washington Gomez Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man