Margaret Bauer had what many would consider an idyllic childhood. She was raised in a restored plantation house in southern Louisiana on the bayou and spent her time with either her feet in the water or her nose in a book. She came from a long line of notable figures, including state politicians and renowned attorneys, so her name often preceded her, but Margaret just wanted to fit in.
She eventually landed in Tennessee for graduate school, and it was there that she felt like she could finally be herself. Bauer dug deep into Southern literature, wrote her dissertation on Ellen Gilchrist, and went on to make a name for herself as a scholar who focuses on how women are represented in Southern literature.
She authored the book “A Study of Scarletts: Scarlett O’Hara and Her Literary Daughters” (The University of South Carolina Press/2014) that tells the stories of fictitious rebellious women from the Civil War to post-WWII. Bauer has served as the editor of the North Carolina Literary Review for 20 years and recently won the 2017 North Carolina Award for Literature.
Host Frank Stasio talks with Margaret Bauer, Rives Chair of Southern Literature in the Department of English at East Carolina University, about her life and work.