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November 6, 2017   Weekly Reader | Books | Book analyzes Southern, Caribbean writers

Book analyzes Southern, Caribbean writers

November 6, 2017
Calypso Magnolia: The Crosscurrents of Caribbean and Southern Literature

By John Wharton Lowe
University of North Carolina Press
Ebook: $29.99 Paperback: $39.95 Hardcover: $95.00

In Calypso Magnolia, UGA professor John Wharton Lowe remakes the map of American culture by revealing the deep, persistent connections between the ideas and works produced by writers of the American South and the Caribbean.

The Barbara Methvin Professor of English in UGA's Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, Lowe demonstrates that a tendency to separate literary canons by national and regional boundaries has led critics to ignore deep ties across highly permeable borders. Focusing on writers and literatures from the Deep South and Gulf states in relation to places including Mexico, Haiti and Cuba, Lowe reconfigures the geography of southern literature as encompassing the "circumCaribbean," a dynamic framework within which to reconsider literary history, genre and aesthetics.

Considering thematic concerns such as race, migration, forced exile, and colonial and postcolonial identity, Lowe contends that southern literature and culture always have transcended the physical and political boundaries of the American South.

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