Eudora Welty and Politics: Did the Writer Crusade?
About this book
This collection of complementary and interrelated essays by ten well-known Welty critics brings welcome clarification to the controversial subject of Eudora Welty and the political, a topic once presumed to be closed tight. As the essays prove, Welty has been inaccurately assessed by critics from Diana Trilling in the Nation (1943) to Claudia Roth Pierpont in the New Yorker (1998) as a writer who avoids political, historical, or cultural engagement in her fiction. The better question these essayists explore is not whether but how Welty's work is to be understood as political.Harriet Pollack, Suzanne Marrs, Peggy Prenshaw, Noel Polk, Suzan Harrison, Ann Romines, Rebecca Mark, Barbara Ladd, Sharon Baris, and Daniele Pitavy-Souques place Welty's seeming rejection of the political in her 1961 essay "Must the Novelist Crusade?" into the cultural and historical context of 1940-1960. Welty, they show, though she repudiated the concept of fiction as editorial, wrote stories that were inherently and unavoidably political.As the only living author to be reedited by the Library of America in its great American writers series, Eudora Welty deserves a sound appreciation of her complex oeuvre. Eudora Welty and Politics provides just that, approaching Welty's work from an all-new point of view.