One of Tennessee Williams’s characters in Vieux Carré tells the audience, “Writers are shameless spies.” Not only was Williams a sponge when it came to people, he also soaked up the atmosphere, history, speech, weather, politics, and cultural memory of the places where he lived and wrote. The choice of where he set his plays and stories was never random, and it always served as a foundation for his characters and stories. On this panel, Margit Longbrake will talk about the distinct and unmistakable influence of New Orleans on Williams, Tom Mitchell will discuss the twenty years he lived in St. Louis and the often-overlooked impact that Missouri and the Midwest had on Williams’s writing, and David Kaplan will examine Williams’s deep artistic and personal connection to Provincetown, Massachusetts. Thomas Keith will moderate.
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