Eudora Welty Newsletter
I had almost finished my second year in graduate school (1983) when I heard that Eudora Welty would give the first annual Massey Lectures in American Civilization at Harvard University. As a displaced Texan from a very small town, my peace with Harvard was shaky. I was homesick for the South, for the breath of emotional openness one can feel even from a stranger in the grocery store, and for the rhythms of southern speech. My first day in Cambridge, the clerk at Out of Town News had refused to sell me a Boston Globe--then 35 cents--because I first hadn't understood from his South Boston r's that he wanted correct change and then had nothing smaller. Hoping for some kind of respite from the struggle to understand and from everyday aggression, I attended Welty's lectures each afternoon for three days, in Longfellow Hall, in the Radcliffe section of campus.
Johnston, Carol Ann, and Martha Porter Sellers. "'The Treasure Most Dearly Regarded By Me': Eudora Welty's Massey Lectures in the History of American Civilization." Eudora Welty Newsletter 27, no. 2 (2003): 9-13.