Harry Crews

Martin Kich (Wright State University)
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Harry Crews was born in the middle of the Great Depression in rural Georgia. For the farm families among whom he was raised, the national economic catastrophe was simply a shadow over their already desperate impoverishment. Many of Crews's preoccupations as a novelist can be traced to his formative experiences, recounted vividly in

A Childhood: A Biography of a Place

(1978). Many of his novels have been set in the rural South, and all of his novels feature characters who are rednecks. Crews manages to get inside of the psyches of these characters and to create if not empathy for them, then at least an understanding of them, even as he conveys their stunted sensibilities, their hardness and their violence. Having endured polio and a severe scalding before the age of six, Crews remained…

651 words

Citation: Kich, Martin. "Harry Crews". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 24 January 2002; last revised 23 June 2022. [https://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=1071, accessed 23 February 2024.]

1071 Harry Crews 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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