Beasts of the Southern Wild

Doris Betts’ Beasts of the Southern Wild and Other Stories was a National Book Award Fiction Finalist in 1974. Surprisingly, the 2012 film of the same title, directed by Benh Zeitlin, is based not on Betts’ book but on a one-act play by Lucy Alibar that simply mentions Betts’ title. The title originally derives from a William Blake poem called “The Little Black Boy,” which begins, “My mother bore me in the southern wild.”