Details

When: Wednesdays, Oct 14 – Dec 16, 9:45-11:45am
(no class on Oct 28 and Nov 25)

Where: The Hampton Inn

Cost: $175.00 for 8 session(s)

Category:

Instructor: William A. Fry a founding member of the Learning Curve faculty, taught literature and writing at a Maryland college for more than thirty years
William A. Fry

Major Authors of New Orleans

The last half of the 19th century saw the Crescent City become the literary capital of the South. Most southern authors were drawn to this magical city where there was an amalgamation of cultures – African, West Indian, French, as well as traces of the frontier spirit and the haunting days of slavery. From Mark Twain and George Washington Cable writing there following the Civil War to Kate Chopin at the turn of the turn of the 20th century to William Faulkner and Zora Neale Hurston in the 20’s and 30’s, New Orleans has held an exotic influence on writers as they wrote some of the finest masterpieces in American literature. In the 40’s and beyond we find Tennessee Williams living in the French Quarter and writing “Streetcar Named Desire” (1947) and other major works of drama and fiction. He spoke of New Orleans as “my spiritual home.” In writing of New Orleans in You Can’t Go Home Again (1940).

Thomas Wolfe states: “There at the snake’s mouth [Mississippi River], southward six hundred miles or so, you see the jeweled crescent of old New Orleans.” In the last part of the 20th century, the Crescent City has given readers Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer (1961), Ernest Gaines’ The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (1971), John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces (1980) — to mention only a few major works to be written about New Orleans by writers who lived in New Orleans. Join Dr. Bill Fry as we take an 8-week armchair tour of enchanting New Orleans and visit the French Quarter’s major literary celebrities.

Week 1: Introduction – Survey of major authors who made New Orleans the “Literary Capital of the South.”
Week 2: George Washington Cable’s “Belles Demoiselles Plantation” from Old Creole Days (1877)
Week 3: Mark Twain’s Life on the Mississippi (1883) – Selections set in New Orleans.
Week 4: Kate Chopin’s short fiction from Bayou Folk (1894) and Night in Acadie (1897).
Week 5: Sherwood Anderson and William Faulkner in New Orleans – Story of an influential friendship.
Week 6: Zora Neale Hurston’s “Hoo Doo” from Mules and Men (1935).
Week 7: Tennessee Williams’ Streetcar Named Desire (1947) and “The Yellow Bird” from One Arm and Other Stories (1948).
Week 8: Ernest J. Gaines’ The Sky is Gray (1963).

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