Date of Award

5-2017

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

English

Major Professor

Margaret Lazarus Dean

Committee Members

Christopher Hebert, William Hardwig, Mark Hulsether, Micheal Knight

Abstract

The Perishing is a novel set in 1980s-2000s southern Appalachia that explores the relationships between religious faith, family, trauma, and opiate addiction. It chronicles nearly thirty years in the life of the Brass family through family members’ narratives in order to present an overall picture of the family’s struggles through time. Central to the novel is the question: How do the things that go unsaid in a family—the secrets, the unsayable—affect the family dynamic?

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