The Past Is Not Dead is a collection of twenty-one literary and historical essays that will mark the 50th anniversary of the Southern Quarterly, one of the oldest scholarly journals (founded in 1962) dedicated to southern studies. Like its companion volume, Personal Souths, The Past Is Not Dead features the best of the work published in the journal. Essays represent every decade of the journal's history, from the 1960s to the 2000s. Topics covered range from historical essays on the French and Indian War, the New Deal, and Emmett Till's influence on the Black Panther Party to literary figures including William Faulkner, Robert Penn Warren, Richard Wright, Eurdora Welty and Carson McCullers. Important regional subjects like the Natchez Trace, the Yazoo Basin, the Choctaw Indians, and Mississippi blues are given special attention. Contributors range from noted literary critics such as Margaret Walker Alexander, Virginia Spencer Carr, Susan V. Donaldson, James Justus, and Willie Morris to scholars of African-American studies such as Robert L. Hall and Manning Marble and historians including John Ray Skates, Martha Swain, and Randy Sparks.
Collectively, the essays in this volume enrich and illuminate our understanding of Southern history, literature, and culture.