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Silas House (Hardback)

Exploring an Appalachian Writer's Work

P&S History > Humanities > Biography & Memoirs

Imprint: University Press of Kentucky
Pages: 208
ISBN: 9780813181127
Published: 30th June 2021
Casemate UK Academic

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Silas House is a beloved and celebrated Kentucky author, music journalist, and activist who has focused nearly all his work on Appalachia and its culture. His groundbreaking writings across genres have captured and catalogued Appalachian life while defying the harmful stereotypes which have labeled the region throughout American history. House's characters are diverse and complex in their racial and social backgrounds, their financial status, their religiosity, their sexuality, and other manners. Such characters represent the complex moral issues entangled throughout the history of this region, otherwise known as the "shimmering knot" before him.


In Silas House and the "Shimmering Knot" Before Him, Shurbutt and the seven contributors will weave together a comprehensive analysis on House's work focused on Appalachia and demonstrate the different methods he has used to overcome the standard portrayals of Appalachian families and culture. Though nationally recognized, this collection will be the first instance of critical essays on House's work. The authors will explore and explain House's complex, often odic approach to his works of fiction and non-fiction. Contributors will interpret House's use of music, lyricism, and metaphor in his works and demonstrate the ever-present theme of breaking the adverse and often untrue stereotypes of Appalachians. The essays will focus on House's characters in his novels which are described by the dominate culture as "others."  


The collection reveals both the broadness of House's writing and the intersections of the fictional and nonfictional worlds House creates as he portrays the "shimmering knot before him," a vision of the complexity of the moral issues that thread throughout his writing and make the award-winning author one of the most comprehensive and engaging voices in Appalachian and American literature today. Silas House and the "Shimmering Knot" Before Him will provide insightful examinations of House's works and promote a deeper understanding and more accurate portrayal of the complexity of Appalachian people and places.

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