Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Thomas Alan Holmes

Committee Members

Micheal Cody, Daniel Westover


The Appalachian studies tradition ascertains that Appalachian people politically, socially, and academically represent a heterogeneous minority group of our own. In post-capitalistic America, however, the Appalachian region serves as a hotspot for media misrepresentation and tourism that perpetuate through works of fiction, nonfiction, and scholarship both negative and positive stereotypes in the overall American consciousness. Twenty-first-century Appalachian authors, I contend, are reinventing Appalachia from its postmodern rubble through fictionalized reconceptualizations of our region’s history, shifts in our collective consciousness from anthropocentric to ecocentric, and subversions of the heteronormative discourse of our internal colony through explorations of the psychosexual. The contemporary Appalachian texts that exemplify these abilities are Ron Rash’s The Cove, Barbara Kingsolver’s Prodigal Summer and Jeff Mann’s Loving Mountains, Loving Men because each represents a paradigm shift within their own aesthetic metanarratives in Appalachian literary history.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.