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Bill Hardwig

Bill Hardwig

Bill Hardwig

Associate Professor

401 McClung Tower


Bill Hardwig is currently working on a book project tentatively called How Cormac Works, focusing on the fiction of Cormac McCarthy and narrative style. His Upon Provincialism: Southern Literature and National Periodical Culture, 1870-1900 (University of Virginia Press, 2013) explores the late-nineteenth century fascination with fiction about the American South. Drawing on travel writing and the often-misunderstood local color movement, this book tracks how the nation’s leading interdisciplinary periodicals, especially the Atlantic MonthlyHarper’sThe Century, translated and broadcast the predominant narratives about the post-war and post-reconstruction South. He has co-edited with Susanna Ashton Approaches to Teaching the Work of Charles W. Chesnutt (MLA Publications 2017), winner of Sylvia Lyons Render Award. He has also edited scholarly editions of the autobiography Background in Tennessee (University of Tennessee Press, 2021), written by Evelyn Scott, and a collection of stories about the Appalachian Mountains, In the Tennessee Mountains (University of Tennessee Press, 2009), written by Mary Noailles Murfree, which was first published in 1884. Professor Hardwig teaches courses on American literature, focusing on Southern, African American, and Appalachian literature of the nineteenth and twentieth century. Course topics include the literature of Cormac McCarthy (ENG 482), immigration in American Literature (ENGL 331), race and science in American literature (ENG 398), Southern literary regionalism (ENG 551), and recurring sections of Southern (ENG 441) and Appalachian (ENG 444 and 661) literature and culture. Professor Hardwig designed and runs the website Literary Knox, which provides information, walking tours, and virtual tours that explore Knoxville’s literary history.

Professor Hardwig has held the Department of English’s Carroll Distinguished Teaching Professorship, has received the College of Arts and Sciences Excellence in Teaching award for Junior Faculty and the John C. Hodges Excellence in Teaching award, has three times received awards for teaching/mentoring from UT’s English graduate students, and has won university and regional advising awards.


  • M.A., University of Illinois, Chicago
  • Ph.D., University of Florida



  • Introduction, Selected Bibliography and Editorship. Background in Tennessee. By Evelyn Scott. (University of Tennessee Press, 2021).
  • Edited with Susanna Ashton. Approaches to Teaching the Works of Charles W. Chesnutt (MLA Publications, 2017). [Winner of the Sylvia Render Lyons Award]
  • Upon Provincialism: Southern Literature and National Periodical Culture, 1870-1900 (University of Virginia Press, 2013).
  • Introduction, Selected Bibliography, and Editorship. In the Tennessee Mountains. By Mary Noailles Murfree (University of Tennessee Press, 2009).

Representative Articles

  • “Local Color and Charles Chesnutt.”  Routledge Companion to Literature of the US South.  New York: Routledge Press, 2022.
  • “Allegory and Allusion in Cormac McCarthy’s Tennessee Novels.” Cormac McCarthy in Context. New York: Cambridge University Press: 2020: 107-117
  • “The Development of Print Culture.” The Blackwell Companion to American Literature: Volume II: 1820-1914. New York: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, 2020: 308-322.
  • Cormac McCarthy’s The Road and the “world to come.”  Studies in American Naturalism (Summer 2013): 38-51.