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Faulkner and Welty and the Southern Literary Tradition$
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Noel Polk

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781934110843

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781934110843.001.0001

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Faulkner and Welty and the Southern Literary Tradition

Faulkner and Welty and the Southern Literary Tradition

(p.2) (p.3) Faulkner and Welty and the Southern Literary Tradition
Faulkner and Welty and the Southern Literary Tradition

Noel Polk

University Press of Mississippi

Generations of southern writers and readers after William Faulkner have adopted his vision, seeing “The South” through his eyes rather than through their own or struggling against that vision. Writers such as Walker Percy and Barry Hannah, who deal with a more urban world than Faulkner does, have occasionally had a hard time with many traditional critics who believe that they represent a decline in “southern literature.” These are the same critics who have too often lumped Eudora Welty and Faulkner together, who have argued that their literary strengths lie directly in their roots in the South. One of Faulkner’s most intimate works, the quasi-autobiographical “Mississippi” (1953), depicts his attempts to grapple with the problems and pressures his native land had caused for him, as well as his reconciliation with past and present Mississippi. The questions of how and why love is better than hate, reconciliation better than alienation, are also present in Welty in general, and in her novel The Golden Apples in particular. However, Welty’s responses to such questions are quite different from those of Faulkner.

Keywords:   southern literature, William Faulkner, South, Mississippi, reconciliation, love, hate, alienation, Eudora Welty, Golden Apples

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