|About the Book|
Florida was the first region of the United States to be discovered, explored, and, after a fashion, settled by Euroamericans. Its population in the early 21st century is approaching 17 million. Within years the number of people living in the stateMoreFlorida was the first region of the United States to be discovered, explored, and, after a fashion, settled by Euroamericans. Its population in the early 21st century is approaching 17 million. Within years the number of people living in the state will surpass those living in New York, and the Sunshine State will become the most populous area east of the Mississippi. The first book in English about Florida was written by Jean Ribault. A French adventurer, Ribault established a colony of Huguenots near present-day Jacksonville. He was captured by the very able Spanish commander Pedro Menendez, who ordered his French rival and all his minions killed.The states long and colorful past is matched by its equally long and colorful literary production. Strangely, critical assessment of Florida literature has lagged far behind. With this volume, the Florida College English Association has formally begun an effort to correct this lamentable oversight. Included are papers on every aspect of Florida literature and history by scholars from every part of the state who are employed in every kind of institution of higher learning. Of special interest are the studies of Florida literature in the 19th century and in the late 20th and early 21st centuries, areas that are generally ignored in national journals. The papers on the contributions of African-American literary figures, such as Zora Hurston and James Weldon Johnson, are noteworthy. Of particular interest are the suggestions for teaching Florida studies in the classroom, which can be adapted for high school as well as college students.