Southern Quarterly

This journal publishes studies of Southern culture and features on arts in the South. It has reviews of books, films, and performances.

Articles from Vol. 41, No. 2, Winter

A Christian in Search of Religious Freedom
THE PLACE OF CONVENTIONAL RELIGION in the life of William Gilmore Simms has been mostly a puzzle to scholars who have dwelt on it. For the most part, Christianity is not an obvious theme in Simms's works as it is in the works of many of his early nineteenth-century...
American Nationalism and the Defense of Poetry
The world is too much with us; late and soon, Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers: Little we see in Nature that is ours; We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon! -William Wordsworth (1807) IN 1783, the year the Treaty of Paris was signed,...
Antebellum American Literature from Natchez to Charleston
THEN THE SOUTH LOST THE CIVIL WAR it lost credibility, status, and crowing rights. It became impossible to say with conviction that Charleston was the literary center of America, that the literary journals of Richmond, Columbia, Charleston, and Savannah...
A Rumpus, to Be Sure: Simms's Michael Bonham
WILLIAM GILMORE SIMMS never visited Texas, but the vast, then-Mexican territory held great imaginative appeal, particularly considering the author's upbringing in the gentility of Charleston, South Carolina. By Simms's birth in 1806, the missions scattered...
Comic Visions, Female Voices: Contemporary Women Novelists and Southern Humor
Comic Visions, Female Voices: Contemporary Women Novelists and Southern Humor By Barbara Bennett. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1998. 135 pp. $30.00 Flannery O'Connor captured the essence of the peculiar quality of southern literature...
Evelyn Scott: Recovering a Lost Modernist
Evelyn Scott: Recovering a Lost Modernist. Edited by Dorothy M. Scura and Paul C. Jones. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2001. This collection of essays is an important contribution to the recovery of Evelyn Scott's work. Scott, born Elsie...
Flannery O'Connor: A Life
Flannery O'Connor: A Life. By Jean W. Cash. Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2002. xvii, 356 pp. $30.00. In graduate school, I took a seminar with Frederick Karl, biographer of such luminaries as Joseph Conrad, William Faulkner, Franz Kafka,...
Literary Grist: Simms's Trips of Mississippi
WILLIAM GILMORE SIMMS made three trips to Mississippi in the earliest days of her statehood, leaving travel records about the state among the first in the English language. More important, however, these trips provided the aspiring author with grist...
Simms's Incarnational Theology and the Emerging American Religion
TO QUESTION whether William Gilmore Simms had a religious point of view is to be positively mystified that Esther and the Song of Songs found a place in the Hebrew canon. It is enough to acknowledge at the beginning that Simms was critical of the religious...
Simms's Last Word on Slavery: The Racial Polit.ics of "Bald-Head Bill Bauldy" and "The Humours of the Manager"
IN A LETTER TO FELLOW SOUTHERN NOVELIST,John Esten Cooke, dated 26 December 1868, William Gilmore Simms wrote, "It irks me that I am forced to tone my mind down to the miserable requisitions of stupid publishers, and low toned readers. I cannot labour...
Simms, Wordsworth, and "The Mysterious Teachings of the Natural World"
ALTHOUGH BEST KNOWN even in his own time for his novels, William Gilmore Simms believed that eventually his verse would rank higher than his fiction (Letters 3: 190); today, however, it is virtually ignored. John Hollander's recent Library of America...
Southwood
SOUTHWOOD IS A SMALL RURAL COMMUNITYjUSt outside of Kinston, North Carolina. I had not been back there since the late 1960s, and it was almost half a century ago that I had spent a year on one of the tobacco farms that you used to find in that part of...
Tennessee Williams and the South
Tennessee Williams and the South. By Kenneth Holditch and Richard Freeman Leavitt. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2002. 111 pp. $30.00 No where in Tennessee Williams and the South is Williams characterized as a "Southern writer," for such...
The Capital Comedy of William Gilmore Simm's "Sharp Snaffles"
IN A 1984 ESSAY, James B. Meriwether observes that despite the high praise it has garnered-albeit among a small coterie of critics-William Gilmore Simms's "How Sharp Snaffles Got His Capital and Wife" has been relegated to the margins of American literature...
The Collected Poems of Tennessee Williams
The Collected Poems of Tennessee Williams. Edited by David Roessel and Nicholas Moschovakis. New York: New Directions, 2002. 304 pp. $29.95. Anyone at all familiar with the poetry of Tennessee Williams would know that Hart Crane was Williams's favorite...
The Commonplace Book of William Byrd II of Westover
The Commonplace Book of William Byrd 11 of Westover. Edited by Kevin Berland,Jan Kirsten Gilliam, and Kenneth A. Lockridge. Chapel Hill: Omohundro Institute of Early American Culture and University of North Carolina Press, 2001. William Byrd II (1674-1744)...
The Origins of African American Literature, 1680-1865
The Origins of African American Literature, 1680-1865. By Dickson D. Bruce, Jr. Charlottesville and London: University Press of Virginia, 2001. xvi+374 pp. For those readers leery of scholarship that makes claims about the origins of one phenomenon or...
The Planter's Prospect: Privilege & Slavery in Plantation Paintings
The Planter's Prospect: Privilege & Slavery in Plantation Paintings. By John Michael Vlach. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2002. x, 216 pp. + illustrations, notes, index. $49.95, $24.95 paper. To this day, painted images of antebellum...
The Southern American Adam: Simms's Alternative Myth
IN INTERESTING IRONY of the Young America/Knickerbocker clashes over a national literature is that Young America spokesperson William Gilmore Simms's literature promotes a national myth quite different from that of his northern contemporaries, a fact...
"To Shadow Forth Its Presence": Simms's Gothic Narrative Poems
Ghostlike we glide through nature, and should not know our place again. -Ralph Waldo Emerson I MY TITLE, OF COURSE, draws upon Simms's early poem, "The Fearful Memory," itself inspired by its creator's reading of German romance, its themes dovetailing...
Two Novels by Mary Chesnut
Two Novels by Mary Chesnut. Edited by Elisabeth Muhlenfeld. With an introduction by Elizabeth Hanson. Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 2002. Two Novels by Mary Chesnut introduces previously unpublished works of fiction found among the papers...
Visualizing the Blues: A Multimedia Review
Exhibit: "Visualizing the Blues, Images of the American South, 1862-1999." Catalog: Wendy McDaris, ed. Foreword by John Grisham. Visualizing the Blues: Images of the American South. Memphis: Dixon Gallery and Gardens, 2000. Hardcover: ISBN 0-- 945064-04-7...
Voices from the Enchanted Circle: Simms and the Poetics of the American Renaissance
My volumes are probably full of things which none can rightly comprehend but one who is himself a Poet, or who has come to feel that poetry is the mysterious voice of the deeper nature lying in the heart, or in the world in which we live. -Letter to...