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Magic Portraits Drawn by the Sun: New Orleans and the sense(s) of death in Josh Russell’s Yellow Jack

Robinson, O (2011) 'Magic Portraits Drawn by the Sun: New Orleans and the sense(s) of death in Josh Russell’s Yellow Jack.' Transatlantica : Revue d'�tudes Am�ricaines. ISSN 1765-2766

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Abstract

In ways comparable to the horrors of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath in 2005, the series of yellow fever epidemics that devastated New Orleans through the nineteenth century were also the result, in part, of the city?s geographical position, its unforgiving climate, and the policies of interested parties; the fever?s awful death toll was likewise accompanied by a grotesque array of sights, sounds and smells. This article will focus upon Josh Russell?s 1999 novel Yellow Jack, which provides a complex portrait of the mid-nineteenth-century city, its fever epidemics, and its conflicting narratives. As well as providing an intense fictional encounter with a formative period in New Orleans?s history, Yellow Jack is a sophisticated study of the role of visual imagery in documenting such horrors, whose prose is steeped in the smells and sounds of the time and place. This article, then, will discuss this novel?s intense engagement with the various ?senses? of a very particular Southern place.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: G�raldine Chouard and Jacques Pothier (eds.), ?The Senses of the South,? a special issue of Transatlantica, the journal of the French Association of American Studies
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PS American literature
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2012 14:47
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2017 18:13
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/1952

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