Saturday, July 30, 2011

The United States of Writers

This is an interesting idea, guaranteed to raise arguments. Publishers Weekly has attempted to determine which U.S. states have the strongest literary tradition. To do this they've selected one singular writer to carry the flag for each of the fifty states. Check their selections here.

Cormac McCarthy for Rhode Island? I know he was born there, but he left at a pretty early age, and his writing is so bound up with place, notably Tennessee and New Mexico and Texas, that it seems unfeasible not to include him there. No surprises with Flannery and William Faulkner. I think Walker Percy could have been in with a shout in Alabama - Harper Lee only wrote the one book, after all. No Don Delillo in New York? I think there are so many New Yorkers they ought to have broken the state down further.

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