In the 1920s and '30s, Edna Ferber was one of the most widely read writers in America. She won the Pulitzer Prize for her 1924 novel So Big. Another of her novels, Show Boat, became a popular musical and a hit film. But perhaps no other work of Ferber's is remembered as well—at least in Texas—as Giant. Despite criticism that Giant was "a slander on Texas," the book became a success—as did the 1956 movie filmed in Marfa starring Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor, and James Dean. Once hailed as one of America's greatest writers, Ferber's critical status has since faded. But her Texas epic remains a landmark in the state's cultural history. More»

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Edna Ferber, 1928. Photo by Nickolas Muray. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, New York World-Telegram and Sun Collection.