Volume 7 examines a broad range of American literature of the past half century, revealing complex relations to changes in society. Christopher Bigsby discusses American dramatists from Tennessee Williams to August Wilson. Morris Dickstein describes the condition of rebellion in fiction from 1940 to 1970. John Burt discusses the writers of the American South. Wendy Steiner examines postmodern fictions since 1970. Finally, Cyrus Patell highlights the voices of Native American, Asian American, Chicano, gay and lesbian writers.