Brian Kent's Reflection in Eudora Welty's "Moon Lake"


  • Dave Seter Dominican University of California


Eudora Welty, Moon Lake, Harold Bell Wright, The Re-creation of Brian Kent


In “Moon Lake,” one of the linked stories in her collection The Golden Apples, Eudora Welty playfully imbeds the (then) contemporary novel The Re-Creation of Brian Kent by Harold Bell Wright. This choice by Welty is clearly deliberate rather than offhand as the similarities between the two texts are too numerous to ignore. Welty’s setting features a lakeside summer camp for girls in the rural south; Wright’s features a river running through a rural landscape said to resemble the Ozarks. Both works of fiction depict acts of near-drowning. By definition mere reference to Wright’s novel within Welty’s text would be an intertextual act. However, the reference to Wright’s novel in “Moon Lake” is not merely allusional. Welty makes the reference physically tangible when she places The Re-Creation of Brian Kent in the hands of two separate characters in “Moon Lake.” The manner in which Welty physically describes and the manner in which the characters in “Moon Lake” react to The Re-Creation of Brian Kent suggest that Welty’s placement of Wright’s novel in “Moon Lake” serves as a playful critique of popular sentiment. 


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Gordon, Leslie. “Re-visiting The Re-creation of Brian Kent.” Eudora Welty Review Vol. 1 (2009): 115-119.

Welty, Eudora. On Writing. New York: Modern Library, 2002.

Welty, Eudora. The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1980.

Wright, Harold Bell. The Re-Creation of Brian Kent. Chicago: The Book Supply Company, 1919.