Walter Sullivan, 82, an authority on Southern literature who taught 51 years at Vanderbilt University, died of cancer Tuesday at his home in Nashville, university officials announced.
Sullivan studied the Fugitive and Agrarian literary movements, which used crafted writing to uphold the traditional values of the agrarian South. He became friends with some of the most prominent figures of the movements, including Robert Penn Warren and Peter Taylor.
A native of Nashville, Sullivan earned his undergraduate degree at Vanderbilt and master's degree at the University of Iowa Writer's Workshop, where he studied with Flannery O'Connor.
Sullivan wrote the novels "Sojourn of a Stranger," "The Long, Long Love" and "A Time to Dance." He was a founding member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers.