A Place Like Mississippi: A Journey Through a Real and Imagined Literary Landscape (Hardcover)
“This is the book all of us Mississippi writers, dead and alive, need to read. It is indeed a strange but glorious sensation to see your literary and geographic lineage so beautifully and rigorously explored and valued as it's still being created.” —Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy: An American Memoir
In A Place Like Mississippi, award-winning author and Mississippi native W. Ralph Eubanks treats us to a literary tour of the evocative landscapes that have inspired writers in every era. From Faulkner to Wright, Welty to Trethewey, Mississippi has been both a backdrop and a central character in some of the most compelling prose and poetry of modern literature.
The journey unfolds on a winding path, touching the muddy Delta, the rolling Hill Country, down to the Gulf Coast, and all points between. In every corner of the state lie the settings that informed hundreds of iconic works.
Immersing us in these spaces, Eubanks helps us understand that Mississippi is not only a state but a state of mind. Or as Faulkner is said to have observed, “To understand the world, you must first understand a place like Mississippi.”
About the Author
W. Ralph Eubanks is author of Ever Is a Long Time and The House at the End of the Road. He has also contributed articles and reviews to the Chicago Tribune, Preservation, The Hedgehog Review, The American Scholar, Time, The Wall Street Journal, WIRED, The New Yorker, and NPR. He is a recipient of a 2007 Guggenheim Fellowship and has been a fellow at the New America Foundation. Eubanks lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and three children, and is currently visiting professor of Southern Studies at the University of Mississippi in Oxford.
“Ralph Eubanks' A Place Like Mississippi is the book all of us Mississippi writers, dead and alive, need to read. It is indeed a strange but glorious sensation to see your literary and geographic lineage so beautifully and rigorously explored and valued as it's still being created. A Place Like Mississippi is further proof that while Mississippi is 50th in many things, when it comes to riveting, textured, literary art, we one of one, as is the genius of Ralph Eubanks.” —Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy: An American Memoir
“I wish I could have been riding shotgun with Ralph Eubanks as he drove the haunted and haunting roads of Mississippi. Fortunately, this captivating book is the next best thing, full of trenchant dispatches that speak to our current moment.” —Sally Mann, author of Hold Still: A Memoir with Photographs
“Some of the most prolific American writers have hailed from Mississippi. Included in that list is essayist W. Ralph Eubanks whose newest work of nonfiction seeks to understand the state’s influence on modern literature.” —Time
“We have a lot to learn from A Place Like Mississippi.” —All Things Considered
“A tribute to Mississippi and its outsized role in the American Literary landscape.” —TIME Magazine