Honors Program

Honors in English

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Dr. Kevin O'Donnell

Thesis Professor Department

<--College of Arts and Sciences-->

Thesis Reader(s)

Dr. Rebecca Adkins Fletcher


In this essay, I investigate how the historic and current economic structures operating in Appalachia from the 1920s to the 2010s are represented in two contemporary Southern Appalachian novels – Serena (2008) by Ron Rash and Flight Behavior (2012) by Barbara Kingsolver. Through the lens of postcolonial theory, I show how Serena represents Appalachia as functioning under the colonial model outlined by Robert Blauner and Helen Mathews Lewis in 1978. Then, still under the theory of postcolonialism, I explore how Kingsolver’s work depicts regional identity in response to a post-colonial environment and the ever-expanding global economy.


East Tennessee State University

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Open Access

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


Copyright by the authors.