Appalachian writer James Still (1906-2001) moved to Kentucky after he was grown, and stayed, finally living in Hindman but keeping his original cabin, located between the waters of Wolfpen Creek and Dead Mare Branch, on Little Carr Creek, where he wrote most of his books, poems, and articles. For 40 years Still gathered sayings from […]comments
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James Still (1906–2001) has cast a long shadow. A diverse canon of ‘Appalachian’ literature has emerged in recent decades, and many authors, including Ron Rash, Lee Smith, and Silas House, have acknowledged River of Earth as the book that inspired them to write about their home region. Some writers from outside Appalachia, such as Wendell Berry, have similarly cited Still as a formative influence.
Still, were he here today, would undoubtedly not claim credit for founding a regional literary movement. He dearly loved the region to which he moved when a young college student (after growing up in Alabama). Yet, Still often told interviewers and friends that he thought of himself as a Southern writer and that he yearned to be considered in the company of William Faulkner, Katherine Anne Porter, and Flannery O’Connor.comments
The work of Appalachian author James Still can be characterized as balancing a fully realized regional consciousness with a profound universality of theme.comments
My neighbor across the creek is already up and busy with his saw and hammer, despite it being Sunday, despite his having worked in the mines all the other six days of the week, often in water shoe-mouth deep, as he tells me, and in spite of there not being a plank requiring sawing or […]comments