Read The Dixie Association by Donald Hays Free Online
Book Title: The Dixie Association|
The author of the book: Donald Hays
Edition: LSU Press
Date of issue: November 1st 1997
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 483 KB
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 1600 times
Reader ratings: 7.9
ISBN 13: 9780807122266
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Meet the Arkansas Reds, the oddest, craziest, rowdiest bunch of sluggers ever to step out of a dugout. The lineup consists of an ex-con first baseman named Hog, a couple of real Reds on loan from Castro, some young bucks on their way up and worn-out old-timers on their way down, a few wild Indians, a woman, a pitcher named Genghis Mohammad, Jr., and a lecherous knuckle-baller — all led by a one-armed Marxist and former major-leaguer named Lefty. Hog chronicles a season with the Reds as they travel from one seedy southern ballpark to another, always barely a step ahead of the small-town sheriffs and right-wing evangelists who think these motley minor-leaguers are an insult to “America’s game.”
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Donald Slaven Hays aka: “Skip” Hays
Arkansas author Donald Slaven “Skip” Hays has published novels and short stories as well as edited an anthology of Southern short stories. He served as director of the Programs in Creative Writing at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County) from 1998 to 2013. Hays is most noted for his novel The Dixie Association, written in 1984 and reprinted as part of the Louisiana State University Press’s series Voices of the South (1997).
Skip Hays was born in Jacksonville, Florida, on June 14, 1947. His father, Donald E. Hays, a chief petty officer in the U.S. Navy during World War II, returned to Arkansas with his family to farm and work in a furniture factory. His mother, Mary Slaven Hays, taught school. Hays and his brother, Philip, grew up in Van Buren (Crawford County) in the midst of a huge family of grandparents, aunts, and uncles who loved to tell a good story.
As a young boy attending school in rural Arkansas, Hays read voraciously. His mother encouraged his reading, often borrowing books for him at the library at Fort Chaffee (Sebastian County). Hays earned a BA in English from Southern State College (now Southern Arkansas University) in Magnolia (Columbia County) in 1969.
Soon after graduation, Hays faced being drafted by the military to serve in Vietnam. He believed that “people should never be asked to fight and die for a cause as vague” as the one in Vietnam. He was granted status as a conscientious objector and served two years in alternative service as a psychiatric aide at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Medical Center. The painful choices his generation made regarding Vietnam became a recurring theme in his writing.
Hays married Patricia Chambers on September 28, 1968, and the couple has one son. The young family lived near Mountainburg (Crawford County), where Hays wrote a novel about Cabeza de Vaca, a sixteenth-century century Spanish nobleman who led survivors of a failed expedition through Florida and the southwest. Although the 900-page manuscript written over three or four years was never published, the experience taught Hays much about storytelling and perseverance. For eight years, he played semiprofessional baseball on Cape Cod and in eastern Oklahoma while holding other jobs, such as the two years he worked in Van Buren as a social worker with foster children and with abused or neglected children and juveniles.
Hays received an MFA in creative writing at UA in 1983. His first published novel, The Dixie Association (1984), about an Arkansas minor league baseball team, loosely based upon the Arkansas Travelers, was nominated for the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction in 1984. The Dixie Association centers upon ex-convict Hog Durham and his ragtag teammates who play minor league baseball for the Arkansas Reds. Critics have called this witty, satirical, Southern baseball novel sacrilegious, exquisitely funny, and occasionally poetic. The 1997 reprinting of the novel in the Voices of the South series recognizes The Dixie Association’s established position in the history of Southern fiction.
Hays’s other works include the novel The Hangman’s Children (1989) and Stories: Contemporary Southern Fiction (1989), edited by Hays. His short story “Dying Light” was reprinted in New Stories from the South: The Year’s Best (2003). His most recent work, Dying Light and Other Stories (2005), is a collection of Hays’s short stories. In 2006, he was awarded the Porter Prize, Arkansas’s premier literary award. He retired from UA in 2013.
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Library
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