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Vol. 8, No. 3: Fall 2002

Robert F. Williams and the Promise of Southern Biography

by Timothy B. Tyson

“But nonetheless I have been lurking in the shadows, plotting and sulking like one of William Faulkner’s vindictive barn-burners.”

I come from a family of preachers, teachers, and farmers, not academics, and most members of my extended clan don’t seem to have any clear sense of what a college professor actually does on, say, Tuesdays. Don’t worry. I’m not about to spill the beans. My late Uncle Dewey Tyson, however, may have already suspected s something. When I told him that I was moving to Wisconsin to be a historian, Uncle Dewey grinned and said, “Well, son, write when you get work.” And so I did. Exiled to the land of frozen lakes and fearful assistant professors, I passed the cold winter nights writing the biography of one of the fieriest southerners who ever told a tale.

This article appears as an abstract above, the complete article can be accessed in Project Muse
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