An interdisciplinary journal about regions, places, and cultures of the US South and their global connections
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  • Owning the Plantation South in the Fiction of the Early Republic

    Jennifer Rae Greeson, University of Virginia

    22 November 2010

    In Our South: Geographic Fantasy and the Rise of National Literature, Jennifer Greeson proposes that the “South” may be the key imaginative figure for working through questions of geography and power in the literature of the United States between the founding of the nation and the beginning of the twentieth century. Greeson’s illustrated lecture, presented at Emory University, outlines how the emerging US geographical imagination becomes yoked to an idea of the South in the decades before and after the Revolutionary War.

    Owning the Plantation South in the Fiction of the Early Republic

    Use the scroller to the right of the playlist to watch all five parts of the talk.


    Jennifer Rae Greeson received her PhD in American Studies from Yale University and is an assistant professor in English and American Studies at the University of Virginia. She is the author of Our South (2010, Harvard University Press). She is also co-editor of the Norton Critical Edition of Charles Chesnutt's Conjure Tales (2011). 

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    Recommended Resources


    Brown, Charles Brockden. Aurthur Mervyn: or memoirs of the year 1773.

    ———. Jane Talbot: a novel.

    ———. An Address to the Government of the United States, on the Cession of Louisiana to the French; and on the Late Breach of Treaty by the Spaniards: Including the Translation of a Memorial, on the War of St. Domingo, and Cession of the Missisippi [sic] to France, Drawn Up by a French Counsellor of State. Philadelphia and Baltimore: John Conrad & Co., 1803.

    de Crèvecoeur, J St. John. Letters From an American Farmer.

    Dwight, Timothy. “A Valedictory Address to the young gentlemen, who commenced Bachelors of Arts, at Yale-College, July 25th. 1776.” New Haven: Thomas and Samuel Green, 1776.

    Greeson, Jennifer Rae. Our South: Geographic Fantasy and the Rise of National Literature. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2010.

    ———. “Colonial Planter to ‘American Farmer’: South, Nation and Decolonization in Crèvecoeur’s Letters.”  Messy Beginnings: Postcoloniality and Early American Studies, ed. Malini Johar Schueller and Edward Watts (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2003).

    ———. “Expropriating The Great South and Exporting ‘Local Color’: Global and Hemispheric Imaginaries of the First Reconstruction.”  Hemispheric American Studies, ed. Caroline Levander and Robert Levine (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2008).

    ———. “Imagining the South.” The Cambridge History of the American Novel, ed. Leonard Cassuto, Claire Eby, and Benjamin Reiss (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011).

    Webster, Noah. The American magazine, containing a miscellaneous collection of original and other valuable essays, in prose and verse. (New York: Samuel Loudon, 1787).

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