Edward Eggleston: The Hoosier Schoolmaster: A Story of Backwoods Life in Indiana

(2109 words)

Edward Eggleston’s The Hoosier Schoolmaster, published in 1871, is a classic of American regional fiction and a “dialect novel” that has long held the interest of linguists for its nuanced portrayal of speech patterns and social customs of nineteenth-century rural Indiana. Set in the 1840s in the fictional backwoods town of Flat Creek, the book relates the exploits of the eponymous schoolmaster-protagonist Ralph Hartsook as he contends with the rustic life and crude conditions of the frontier district. The schoolmaster, likening himself to a bulldog he encounters early in his adventure, shows pluck and tenacity, struggling against the provincialism of the Flat Creekers, quelling rebellious pupils, and surviving s…

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Chura, Patrick , Rachel Roth. "The Hoosier Schoolmaster: A Story of Backwoods Life in Indiana". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 December 2011
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=34184, accessed 26 November 2015.]