William Gilmore Simms (1807–1870), the antebellum South's foremost author and cultural critic, was the first advocate of regionalism in the creation of national literature. Now being rediscovered by a new generation of scholars, Simms has come to be acknowledged as the ancestral father of modern southern literature. This collection of essays emphasizes his multifaceted portrayal of America's westward migration and examines his depictions of the frontier from traditional and theoretical perspectives.
As a whole, these essays represent a tribute to Simms's achievement and versatility. This volume will be a vital tool for all readers and scholars of nineteenth-century American literature, and for anyone interested in the development of the American frontier and its depictions in literature.