The literature of the U.S. South has found new life in the burgeoning field of inter-American literary studies. Both the U.S. South's literatures and its histories have played key roles in the academic attempt to connect the literatures and histories of the United States to those of Latin America and the Caribbean from the groundbreaking work of Bell Gale Chevigny and Gari Laguardia's 1986 collection, Reinventing the Americas: Comparative Studies of Literature of the United States and Spanish America, through Gustavo Pérez Firmat's "invitation or come-on" to study American literatures side by side in his 1990 edited volume, Do the Americas Have a Common Literature? to Caroline F. Levander and Robert S. Levine's recent collection, Hemispheric American Studies. The U.S. South aptly serves as the metaphorical bridge between the northern and southern halves of the American hemisphere because, as Deborah Cohn and Jon Smith argue in their introduction to Look Away!: The U.S. South in New World Studies, "the U.S. South comes to occupy a space unique within modernity: a space simultaneously (or alternately) center and margin, victor and defeated, empire and colony, essentialist and hybrid, northern and southern (both in the global sense)".
Arizona Quarterly: A Journal of American Literature, Culture, and Theory