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Walter publishes literary criticism on marriage and novels in the American romance tradition

Contact: Christina Chapple


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James Walter

     HAMMOND A book by Southeastern Louisiana University English professor James Walter, “Reading Marriage in the American Romance: Remembering Love as Destiny,” has been published by Lexington Books, a division of Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc.

     The book examines modern and postmodern romance novels including Hawthorne's “The House of the Seven Gables,” James's “The Beast in the Jungle,” Morrison's “Beloved,” Percy's “The Thanatos Syndrome” and Frazier's “Cold Mountain.”

     Said the publisher, “Eight chapters devoted to understanding these entertaining and thought-engendering romances exemplify modes of interpretation that enable readers to recognize connections between romance and the emblem of the genre's narrative goal, marriage …What Walter helps his readers see are not only the origins of marriage in desire, memory and human freedom, but also its deep challenges, consequences and rewards for individuals and society as a whole.”

     Walter, a former long-time director of the university’s Honors Program, said, "I am indebted not only to my parents but to many teachers, colleagues, friends and especially my wife Marguerite for inspiration to write about love and marriage."

     Walter is a graduate of the University of Dallas, where he earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. He was the 1991 recipient of one of Southeastern’s highest faculty honors, the President's Award for Excellence in Teaching. Also at Southeastern, he directed two major National Endowment for the Humanities grants for development of the honors curriculum, cited as "exemplary" in the NEH publication “Fifty Hours: A Core Curriculum for College Students.”

     Walter is the author of numerous articles and book chapters on American fiction, Shakespeare, Dante, genre, teaching writing, and liberal education. He has been published in journals such as “PMLA,” “Southern Review,” “Southern Literary Journal,” “Twentieth-Century Literature,” “Emerson Society Quarterly,” “Hopkins Quarterly,” “South Atlantic Quarterly,” and “Christianity and Literature.” He is a past member of board of directors of the Association of Core Texts and Courses.

     A native of Gainesville, Texas, Walter is the son of the late Joe B. and Anna Walter. His sister, Mary Jo Graham, and numerous relatives live in the Gainesville area. Walter is a 1961 graduate of Subiaco Academy in Subiaco, Ark.

     Additional information on “Reading Marriage in the American Romance: Remembering Love as Destiny” is available at The book can be purchased online on the publisher’s web site as well as and It is expected to be released soon in paperback format.

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