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Writing AppalachiaAn Anthology$
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Katherine Ledford and Theresa Lloyd

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780813178790

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813178790.001.0001

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Marilou Awiakta

Marilou Awiakta


(p.299) Marilou Awiakta
Writing Appalachia
Katherine Ledford, Theresa Lloyd
University Press of Kentucky

Poet, storyteller, and essayist Marilou Awiakta explores the intersection of traditional and modern Appalachian life by blending her Appalachian and Cherokee heritages with the legacy of post–World War II nuclear energy research in her hometown of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Born Marilou Bonham in Knoxville to a family with Scots-Irish and Native American roots reaching back to the 1730s, Awiakta (her middle name) was raised with an awareness of social and environmental responsibility. When Awiakta was nine, her family moved to Oak Ridge, where her father agreed to work for two years in the nuclear facility, known locally as “the secret city.” After graduating from the University of Tennessee in 1958, Awiakta moved to France with her husband, a physician with the US Air Force. While there, she worked as a liaison and translator for the base....

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