Known for being one of the main battlefields of the Civil Rights Movement and the earlier Civil War, Virginia has been the backdrop and inspiration for many critically acclaimed books, films and artists.
Novelist Virginia Andrews’ novels intertwine a gothic horror theme with a family saga; one of her most well-known best-sellers is Flowers in the Attic from 1979. Virginian born novelist William Styron is one of the state’s biggest-selling writers and is the author of such works as The Confessions of Nat Turner, which tells the story of the leader of a slave revolt in 1831. The novel received much publicity but also prompted widespread literary controversy.
Historical film Alvarez Kelly is based on the real-life Beefsteak Raid of September 1864 and was directed by Edward Dmytryk. Similarly, Arlington Road directed by Mark Pellington, was a huge hit upon release in 1999; it is a crime and mystery drama about a university professor’s infatuation with his neighbours.
The film Gods and Generals is based on Jeffrey Shaara’s novel and is directed by Ronald F. Maxwell. It focuses on the Civil War years within the state.
Virginia is perhaps very well known on the music scene for producing its fair share of hip-hop and R&B artists; including Missy Elliot and Timbaland. The state is also home to the legendary jazz soul singer Ella Fitzgerald.