Found Anew is an anthology of new poetry and prose from writers with strong ties to the Palmetto State that creatively engages with historical photographs found in the digital collections of the University of South Carolina's South Caroliniana Library. In their eclectic approach to ekphrasis—textual response to the visual—editors R. Mac Jones and Ray McManus have recruited an impressive group of poets and fiction writers, including National Book Award-winning poets Terrance Hayes and Nikky Finney (who provides the foreword); their fellow South Carolina Academy of Authors honorees Gilbert Allen, John Lane, Bret Lott, George Singleton, and Marjory Wentworth; Lillian Smith Award-winner Pam Durban, and others.
These thirty-one pairings of archival images with original creative responses illustrate the breadth and richness of the diverse talents of South Carolina writers. While the digital collections are a much-valued resource for researchers and educators, Found Anew encourages a wider use as a source of inspiration for writers and artists inventing narratives set in and about South Carolina. In coupling the poems and short stories with the images that inspired them, the anthology shows writers gauging unlikely depths in curious photographs that other eyes might pass over without a second glance, conjuring perfect words for the emotion evoked by a particular image, and rendering and reimagining the visual in seemingly disparate but ultimately linked narratives. An instructive model for active, collaborative engagement between creative writers and culturally significant visual prompts, this collection also serves to demonstrate the accessibility and scope of archival photography available through South Caroliniana's digital collections. Through these creative responses, the images are not recovered or explained—but, rather, found anew.
Contributors: Gilbert Allen, Sam Amadon, Laurel Blossom, Darien Cavanaugh, Phebe Davidson, Pam Durban, Julia Eliot, Worthy Evans, Richard Garcia, Will Garland, Linda Lee Harper, Terrance Hayes, Thomas L. Johnson, R. Mac Jones, Julia Koets, John Lane, Brett Lott, Ed Madden, Jonathan Maricle, Terri McCord, Janna McMahan, Ray McManus, Susan Laughter Meyers, Mark Powell, Michele Reese, Mark Sibley-Jones, George Singleton, Charlene Spearen, Daniel Nathan Terry, Jillian Weise, Marjory Wentworth, William Wright
R. Mac Jones is an assistant professor of English in the Extended University at the University of South Carolina. A former editor of Yemassee, Jones, writing as Raster Jones, is the author of poetry appearing in the James Dickey Review, Town Creek Poetry, and other publications.
Ray McManus is an associate professor of English at the University of South Carolina Sumter. McManus is the author of four books of poetry: Punch, Red Dirt Jesus, Left Behind, and Driving through the Country before You Are Born (winner of the South Carolina Poetry Book Award). His poetry and prose have appeared in Los Angeles Review, Arkansas Review, Texas Poetry Review, Hard Lines: An Anthology of Rough South Poetry, State of the Heart: South Carolina Writers on the Places They Love, Volume 2, and other journals and anthologies.
"The idea for this project is ingenious, and the result kept me mesmerized for hours. These gifted writers can be counted on to surprise and engage no matter the prompt. But otherwise rarely seen and fascinating historic photographs inspiring these particular imaginations—well—it more than doubles the pleasures."—Susan Ludvigson
"It would be enough for Found Anew to be a brilliantly and lovingly conceived and curated, tastefully and splendidly designed book, but it is more than that. It is filled with consistently urgent works of prose and poetry of the highest quality written by a gathering of some of the best writers working in this country today. Finally it features photographs that offer subtle and evocative flashes of South Carolinian history. This book deserves all the superlatives anyone can muster."—Kwame Dawes, author of Duppy Conqueror: New and Selected Poems