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American Literature

A history of Virginia literature by Kevin J. Hayes

By Kevin J. Hayes

A historical past of Virginian Literature chronicles a narrative that has been greater than 400 years within the making. It seems on the improvement of literary tradition in Virginia from the founding of Jamestown in 1607 to the twenty-first century. Divided into 4 major elements, this background examines the literature of colonial Virginia, Jeffersonian Virginia, Civil warfare Virginia, and sleek Virginia. person chapters survey such literary genres as diaries, histories, letters, novels, poetry, political writings, promoting literature, technological know-how fiction, and slave narratives. major students additionally dedicate distinct recognition to numerous significant authors, together with William Byrd of Westover, Thomas Jefferson, Ellen Glasgow, Edgar Allan Poe, and William Styron. This e-book is of pivotal significance to the improvement of yankee literature and of yankee reports extra ordinarily

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Brief opening chapters treated the Indian, European, and Negro populations. Six chapters dealt at greater length with the colony and its newly built capital, with topography and agriculture, with Virginia’s social life and tobacco economy, and with prospects for new commodities and economic diversification. Part three devoted half a dozen pages to the church and clergy. In part four Jones commented on published books about Virginia, listed the colony’s major officeholders, and offered a few paragraphs about Maryland and North Carolina.

The Literary Culture of Jamestown 15 Promotional authors depicted the voyage to America as quick and easy, almost effortless. Food and drink, they assured readers, awaited their pleasure. The traveler need not worry about vicious animals, insects, or Indians. Furthermore, the land would provide limitless timber for shelter and settlement. There would be no need for toil, since America is a garden of delight. There is no sickness; health reigns supreme. The persons “planted” there shall be self-sufficient, vitiating the struggle of international trade competition.

1, p. 93. 17. Smith, Complete Works, vol. 1, p. 97. 18. Smith, Complete Works, vol. 1, pp. 201, 211. 19. Smith, Complete Works, vol. 2, p. 128. 26 karen schramm 20. Benjamin Franklin, Writings, ed. J. A. Leo Lemay (New York: Library of America, 1987), p. 978. 21. Smith, Complete Works, vol. 1, p. 213. 22. Smith, Complete Works, vol. 1, pp. 217, 218, 228. For a discussion of Smith’s humor, see Robert D. Arner, “John Smith, the ‘Starving Time,’ and the Genesis of Southern Humor: Variations on a Theme,” Louisiana Studies 12 (1973), pp.

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