Phillip GordonNov 17, 2020
Uncovering a Homosexual Presence in Yoknapatawpha and Beyond
University Press of Mississippi 2019
The life and works of William Faulkner have generated numerous biographical studies exploring how Faulkner understood southern history, race, his relationship to art, and his place in the canons of American and world literature. However, some details on Faulkner’s life collected by his early biographers never made it into published form or, when they did, appeared in marginalized stories and cryptic references. The biographical record of William Faulkner’s life has yet to come to terms with the life-long friendships he maintained with gay men, the extent to which he immersed himself into gay communities in Greenwich Village and New Orleans, and how profoundly this part of his life influenced his “apocryphal” creation of Yoknapatawpha County.
Gay Faulkner: Uncovering a Homosexual Presence in Yoknapatawpha and Beyond (U Mississippi Press, 2019) explores the intimate friendships Faulkner maintained with gay men, among them Ben Wasson, William Spratling, and Hubert Creekmore, and places his fiction into established canons of LGBTQ literature, including World War I literature and representations of homosexuality from the Cold War. The book offers a full consideration of his relationship to gay history and identity in the twentieth century, giving rise to a new understanding of this most important of American authors.
Phillip "Pip" Gordon was born in Memphis, Tennessee, and grew up in nearby Jackson. A proud West Tennessean, he holds degrees from the University of Tennessee-Martin (BA, 2005) and the University of Mississippi (MA, 2008; PhD, 2013). He currently lives and works in Platteville, Wisconsin, where he teaches American Literature, Film, and Gay and Lesbian Studies. He lives with his dog, Scout.
Morris Ardoin is the author of Stone Motel: Memoirs of a Cajun Boy, (2020, University Press of Mississippi). He writes the blog “Parenthetically Speaking,” focusing on food from Louisiana and life as a Cajun New Yorker. Website: morrisardoin.com
John Marszalek III is author of Coming Out of the Magnolia Closet: Same-Sex Couples in Mississippi (2020, University Press of Mississippi). He is clinical faculty of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program at Southern New Hampshire University. Website: Johnmarszalek3.com Twitter: @marsjf3