Composing Selves : Southern Women and Autobiography

By: Prenshaw, Peggy WhitmanMaterial type: TextTextSeries: eBooks on DemandSouthern Literary Studies: Publisher: Baton Rouge : LSU Press, 2011Edition: 1Description: 1 online resource (627 p.)ISBN: 9780807139769Subject(s): American prose literature - Southern States - History and criticism | American prose literature -- Southern States -- History and criticism | American prose literature - Women authors - History and criticism | American prose literature -- Women authors -- History and criticism | Autobiography - Southern States - History and criticism | Autobiography - Women authors - History and criticism | Autobiography -- Women authors -- History and criticism | Southern States -- Biography -- History and criticism | Southern States - History and criticism | Women - Southern States - Biography - History and criticism | Women -- Southern States -- Biography -- History and criticismGenre/Form: Electronic books.Additional physical formats: Print version:: Composing Selves : Southern Women and AutobiographyDDC classification: 818.50309928 | 818.503099287 LOC classification: PS366.A88 .P784 2011Online resources: Click here to view this ebook.
Contents:
Cover Page; Title Page; Copyright Page; Dedication; Contents; Acknowledgments; 1. Region, Genre, Gender; 2. A Feminist Life Narrative in a Traditionalist Society: Belle Kearney; 3. A Distanced Southern Girlhood: Helen Keller and Anne Walter Fearn; 4. Wifehood Narratives: Mary Hamilton and Agnes Grinstead Anderson; 5. Belles, Wives, and Public Lives, Part I: Mary Craig Kimbrough Sinclair; 6. Belles, Wives, and Public Lives, Part II: Virginia Foster Durr, Lindy Claiborne Boggs, and Lylah Scarborough Barber
7. Testimonial Narratives of Racial Consciousness: Katharine DuPre Lumpkin and Lillian Smith8. Narratives of a Writing Life, Part I: Ellen Glasgow and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings; 9. Narratives of a Writing Life, Part II: Zora Neale Hurston and Bernice Kelly Harris; 10. Modes of Autobiographical Narrative: Eudora Welty, Elizabeth Spencer, and Ellen Douglas; Coda: Reflections on a Literary Genre; Notes; Works Cited; Index
Summary: In Composing Selves, award-winning author Peggy Whitman Prenshaw provides her most comprehensive and theoretically sophisticated treatment of autobiographies by women in the American South. This long-anticipated addition to Prenshaw's study of southern literature spans the twentieth century as she provides an in-depth look at the life-writing of eighteen female authors. Drawing on so many notable authors and her own life-time of scholarship Composing Selves is Prenshaw's master work.
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Cover Page; Title Page; Copyright Page; Dedication; Contents; Acknowledgments; 1. Region, Genre, Gender; 2. A Feminist Life Narrative in a Traditionalist Society: Belle Kearney; 3. A Distanced Southern Girlhood: Helen Keller and Anne Walter Fearn; 4. Wifehood Narratives: Mary Hamilton and Agnes Grinstead Anderson; 5. Belles, Wives, and Public Lives, Part I: Mary Craig Kimbrough Sinclair; 6. Belles, Wives, and Public Lives, Part II: Virginia Foster Durr, Lindy Claiborne Boggs, and Lylah Scarborough Barber

7. Testimonial Narratives of Racial Consciousness: Katharine DuPre Lumpkin and Lillian Smith8. Narratives of a Writing Life, Part I: Ellen Glasgow and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings; 9. Narratives of a Writing Life, Part II: Zora Neale Hurston and Bernice Kelly Harris; 10. Modes of Autobiographical Narrative: Eudora Welty, Elizabeth Spencer, and Ellen Douglas; Coda: Reflections on a Literary Genre; Notes; Works Cited; Index

In Composing Selves, award-winning author Peggy Whitman Prenshaw provides her most comprehensive and theoretically sophisticated treatment of autobiographies by women in the American South. This long-anticipated addition to Prenshaw's study of southern literature spans the twentieth century as she provides an in-depth look at the life-writing of eighteen female authors. Drawing on so many notable authors and her own life-time of scholarship Composing Selves is Prenshaw's master work.

Description based upon print version of record.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

The doyenne of southern women's writing, Prenshaw (emer., Louisiana State Univ.) here turns her attention to the personal narratives of 18 southern women, confirming her reputation as a pioneering, meticulous scholar. In the first chapter, she reviews relevant scholarship, including work on the history of southern women, analyses of what makes the South distinctive, theories of autobiography (general and feminist), and literary criticism. Her goal is "an exploration of autobiography, women narrators, and 'southernness,' and the ways in which regionality, gender, and genre are experienced, enacted and thus made visible in a variety of life writings by southern women." To that end, she considers writing by women who came of age in the "late southern Victorian period" (1865-1930s), including work by well-recognized names (Ellen Glasgow, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, Zora Neale Hurston, Lillian Smith, Virginia Durr) and also that of several less-known writers deserving of recognition. Tracing such themes as race, identity, regionalism, the "cult of true womanhood," the Lost Cause, and the credibility of memory, she looks at the indirection women use in writing personal narratives, the focus on relationships rather than self, and the role of the narrator as witness. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-division undergraduates and above. E. R. Baer Gustavus Adolphus College

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Peggy Whitman Prenshaw is Fred C. Frey Professor of Southern Studies Emerita at Louisiana State University and Millsaps College Humanities Scholar-in-Residence. She is the author of Elizabeth Spencer and editor of Conversations with Eudora Welty. She received a lifetime achievement award from the Society for the Study of Southern Literature, and the Charles Frankel Prize for service to the humanities.

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