University of Mississippi

Congratulations to the winners of the 2012 Common Reading Experience Essay Contest!

The 2012 UM Common Reading Experience book is Tom Franklin’s Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter. The book brings to light questions [of/about] ethics, the rush to judgment, Southern race relations, and human nature. Contestants were asked to write an essay that discusses ONE of the following:

  • William Faulkner claims that “the past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Does Franklin’s novel support this statement? How?
  • How do Larry Ott’s friendships compare to your definition of the term? How do they compare to each other? Toward the end of the novel, Larry begins to question his judgment of these relationships. What does that show the reader about Larry?
  • The novel certainly contains accounts of man’s flaws – Silas (32) wonders “what’s missing” out of him, the townspeople worry that Larry has turned into a monster because of the way he’s been treated, and Wallace’s flaws are exemplified in his relationships with women. What do these men’s flaws reveal about them, the society in which they live, and the families from which they came?

The 2012 Common Reading Experience Essay Contest winners are:

William T. Jaynes
(University of Mississippi, Oxford)

Juan Acevedo
(University of Mississippi, Southaven)

Kaitlin Conwill
(University of Mississippi, Booneville)

Mackenzie Ross
(Oxford High School)

Each winner was awarded $150.00 for their contest entry. Congratulations!