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American Passages: A Literary Survey

Southern Renaissance – Timeline

This timeline places literary publications (in black) in their historical contexts (in red).


– Katherine Anne Porter, “Maria Concepcion” (1922), Flowering Judas (1930)
– William Faulkner, The Marble Faun (1924), Soldier’s Pay (1926), Mosquitos (1927), Sartoris(1929), The Sound and the Fury (1929)
– John Crowe Ransom, Here Lies a Lady (1924)
Group of writers who would later come to be known as the Southern Agrarians publishes The Fugitive as an outlet for their poetry and criticism (1922-25)
State v. John Scopes (the Scopes “Monkey” Trial), Dayton, Tennessee (1925)
Wall Street crash begins the Great Depression (1929)

[5122] Anonymous, [Rowan Oak, Old Taylor Rd., Oxford, Lafayette County, Ms] courtesy of Library of Congress [HABS, MISS,36-OXFO,9-]


– William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying (1930), Sanctuary (1931), Light in August (1932), Absalom, Absalom! (1936), “Barn Burning” (1938)
– Southern Agrarians publish I’ll Take My Stand, by “Twelve Southerners”
– Zora Neale Hurston, “The Gilded Six-Bits” (1933), Jonah’s Gourd Vine (1934), Mules and Men(1935), Their Eyes Were Watching God (1937)
– Margaret Mitchell, Gone With the Wind (1936)
– Katherine Anne Porter, Noon Wine (1937), “Pale Horse, Pale Rider” (1939)
– Richard Wright, Uncle Tom’s Children (1938), “The Man Who Was Almost a Man” (1939)
“Scottsboro Boys” (nine African American youths) tried for the alleged rape of two white women, Victoria Price and Ruby Bates (1931-37)
Faulkner in Hollywood on contract as a scriptwriter (1932-37)
Eighteenth Amendment repealed; Prohibition ends (1933)
World War II begins (1939)

[4730] Marion Post Wolcott, Political Poster On Sharecropper’s House, Mississippi Delta, Mississippi (1939) courtesy of Library of Congress [LC-USF33-030570-M3].

[2256] Russell Lee, Negro Drinking At “Colored” Water Cooler In Streetcar Terminal, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (1939) courtesy of Library of Congress [LC-USZ62-80126].


– William Faulkner, The Hamlet (1940), Intruder in the Dust (1948)
– Richard Wright, Native Son (1940), Black Boy (1945)
– Eudora Welty, “Petrified Man” (1941), The Robber Bridegroom (1942)
– Zora Neale Hurston, Dust Tracks on a Road (1942)
– Robert Penn Warren, “Bearded Oaks” (1942), All the King’s Men (1946)
– Katherine Anne Porter, The Leaning Tower (1944)
– Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie (1945), A Streetcar Named Desire (1947)
– The Portable Faulkner, ed. Malcolm Cowley (1946)
Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor brings United States into World War II (1941)
United States drops atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki; Japan surrenders, ending World War II. Cold War between United States and Soviet Union begins (1945)
Jackie Robinson becomes first black major-league baseball player (1947)


– Flannery O’Connor, “Good Country People” (1955)
– William Faulkner, The Town (1957), The Mansion (1959)
Senator Joseph McCarthy begins attacks on communism (1950)
Korean War (1950-53)
House Concurrent Resolution 108 dictates government’s intention to “terminate” its treaty relations with the Native American tribes (1953)
Brown v. Board of Education declares segregated schools unconstitutional (1954)