Term of Award

Spring 2022

Degree Name

Master of Arts in English (M.A.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Literature

Committee Chair

Caren Town

Committee Member 1

Brad Edwards

Committee Member 2

Hans-Georg Erney


Southern literature is well-known for its disabled characters due to the proliferation of the Southern Gothic genre. Many scholars have identified these disabled characters as metaphors for the failure of the Lost Cause, but less attention has been placed on how the internalization of the Lost Cause mythology has caused Southerners to become disabled. Hence, this study aims at understanding the relationship between grand narratives and Southerners through a cultural studies approach. This thesis focuses on short stories, specifically Flannery O’Connor’s “Good Country People” (1955), Breece D’J Pancake’s “Time and Again” (1983), and Bobbie Ann Mason’s “Shiloh” (1982). The research concludes that various iterations of the Lost Cause mythology, including Southern manners and patriarchal ideologies disable all Southerners regardless of race, gender, or class.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material