Rowan Oak, The William Faulkner House
Built in 1844, this was the home of William Faulkner from 1930-1962. Faulkner was one of the 20th century's greatest writers, earning the Nobel Prize in literature in 1950 and the Pullitzer Prize in 1955 and 1963 (a year after he passed away). The estate became a National Historic Landmark in 1968. The University of Mississippi acquired the property in 1972 and operates the home as a museum dedicated to preserving and interpreting the life of one of America's most-influential novelists.
Backstory and Context
A fellow writer in New Orleans, Sherwood Anderson, suggested to Faulkner that he write about the South, as he (Faulkner) was a true "southern boy." This suggestion would prove to be turning point in Faulkner's career. In 1931 his novel Sanctuary earned him wide critical acclaim. However it wasn't really until 1946 that a compilation of his works really boosted his profile nationally and internationally. Called the Yoknapatawpha series, the series is comprised of volumes and novels of short stories written between 1929-1962. Yoknapatawpha is the name Faulker made up for mythical county in the south. Though imaginative, the county was also grounded in reality and served as a parable about the South. As such, Faulkner dealt with the wealthy aristocracy, the commercial class, race relations, the bravery of African Americans, and the incompatibility of nature and the modern world.