The Great American Novel podcast is an ongoing discussion about the novels we hold up as significant achievements in our American literary culture. Additionally, we sometimes suggest novels who should break into the sometimes problematical canon and at other times we’ll suggest books which can be dropped from such lofty consideration. Your hosts are Kirk Curnutt and Scott Yarbrough, professors with little time and less sense who nonetheless enjoy a good book banter.
Our 8th episode is a consideration of one of the most significant works of Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison. We dive deep into Morrison’s 6th novel, BELOVED, and consider the ways our culture is still wrestling with the demons she evokes in this 1987 Pulitzer Prize winning novel. Based partly on the true story of escaped slave Margaret Garner, Beloved tells the story of Sethe and her community, and asks what it means to be haunted by a past that cannot be buried, even if people would just as soon not pass the story on.
Our canon fodder suggestion in this episode is Margaret Walker’s 1966 novel, Jubilee.
All show music is by Lobo Loco. The intro song is “Old Ralley”; the midpoint intermission is “The First Minute,” and the outro is “Inspector Invisible.” For more information see here: https://locolobomusic.com/.