Synopses & Reviews
A well-known nineteenth-century abolitionist an former slave, William Wells Brown was a prolific writer and lecturer who captivated audiences with readings of his drama The Escape; or, a Leap for Freedom (1858). The first published play by an African American writer, The Escape explored the complexities of American culture at a time when tensions between North and South were about to explode into the Civil War. This new volume presents the first-edition text of Brown's play and features an extensive introduction that establishes the work's continuing significance.
The Escape centers on the attempted sexual violation of a slave and involves many characters of mixed race, through which Brown commented on such themes as moral decay, white racism, and black self-determination. Rich in action and faithful in dialect, it raises issues relating not only to race but also to gender by including concepts of black and white masculinity and the culture of southern white and enslaved women. It portrays a world in which slavery provided a convenient means of distinguishing between the white North and the white South, allowing northerners to express moral sentiments without recognizing or addressing the racial prejudice pervasive among whites in both regions.
John Ernest's introductory essay balances the play's historical and literary contexts, including information on Brown and his career, as well as on slavery, abolitionism, and sectional politics. It also discusses the legends and realities of the Underground Railroad, examines the role of antebellum performance art -- including blackface minstrelsy and stage versions of Uncle Tom's Cabin -- in the construction of race and national identity,and provides an introduction to theories of identity as performance.
A century and a half after its initial appearance, The Escape remains essential reading for students of African American literature. Ernest's keen analysis of this classic play will enrich readers' appreci
Old Southern Apples is a delightful and definitive review of the history and uses of apples in the South from Maryland to Texas and from Florida to Arkansas.
Although apples became a major commercial crop in parts of the South in the late 1800’s, for 300 years southern farm families grew them as an important, year-round food source. Through the selection and grafting of wild seedlings, southerners developed unique apple varieties adapted to climate and soils of the South and suited to specific uses such as cider and apple butter. In fact, more than 1,300 apple varieties originated in the South, and another 300 varieties of northern and European origin were grown there,
Old Southern Apples opens with an overview of apple history, culture, and uses in the agrarian south. This is followed by an exhaustive compilation of apple varieties grown before 1928. the more than 1,600 varieties are divided into extant and extinct groups, accompanied by a wealth of horticultural and historical facts about each apple. The book also includes a bibliography, a description of nurseries that sell old southern apple varieties, and an index of more than 3,600 apple names and synonyms. Forty-eight color reproductions of USDA paintings form the 1880-1930 period illustrate important apple varieties, while vintage engravings depict cultivation and propagation practices in the South.
Includes bibliographical references (p. -54).
About the Author
Creighton Lee Calhoun, Jr. owns and operates a nursery in Pittsboro, North Carolina, that specializes in old southern apple varieties. A retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army, he holds a Master of Science degree in bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin.