Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts



First Advisor

Benedict, Pinckney


Missouri Mean is a novel that explores the rampant guerrilla fighting that occurred in Missouri during the U.S. Civil War. The novel opens with the main character, Willis Creed, cleaning fish outside of his home when a dying horse arrives. The horse belongs to a neighbor and has been badly wounded in a gunfight. Shortly after, members of the Missouri State Militia appear and accuse Willis's father of aiding and abetting the guerrilla fighters. Eventually, they hang the father and Willis barely manages to escape. The rest of the novel deals with Willis's trauma and his indoctrination into a guerrilla unit.




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