Southern Gothic Literature

In September we start reading “Southern Gothic” literature, focusing on those works published between 1930 and 1970. (By the way, if you’ve ever wondered why Southern Gothic is so universally popular, here’s a great little essay on that.)

The Member of the Wedding


Our first book will be The Member of the Wedding, which is a poignant story, set in a small town in Georgia circa 1940. We will use the discussion questions found in the Houghton-Mifflin study guide.   And here is an interesting article on Carson McCullers. After this one we will work chronologically through these novels, adding in some short stories with some of them. Every couple of months we may read a contemporary Southern writer, such as Cormac McCarthy or Pat Conroy.

The Reading List

The Member of the Wedding by Carson McCullers (1946)

Light In August by William Faulkner (1932)

Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor (1952) – A great article on this is here.

The Moviegoer by Walker Percy (1961)

The Optimist’s Daughter by Eudora Welty (1973)