Where does Alice Walker's story "The Flowers" take place?

Alice Walker's story "The Flowers" takes place on a farm and in the adjacent woods. The exact location is not specified but is most likely in the Southern United States.

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In her story "The Flowers," Alice Walker does not specify the overall geographic location. Because Walker generally writes about the United States, the reader can infer that this story also has a US setting. The immediate settings are a farm and the woods next to it. The crops mentioned suggest that the farm is in the South. In addition, the revelations near the story’s end suggest that it takes place in a state where Black people were killed by lynching. This makes it likely that the setting is a Southern state.

Although the story is very short, Walker provides considerable detail about the immediate environment. The narrator first states that Myop was skipping from “hen house to pigpen to smokehouse.” They also mention the ongoing harvest of numerous crops: corn, cotton, peanuts, and squash. Later, they mention that her family lived in a “sharecropper cabin.” Considered together, all this information confirms that she lived on a farm. Of the crops mentioned, cotton and peanuts are limited by climate to Southern states. The other location mentioned is “the woods behind the house.”

According to the NAACP website, from the 1860s to the 1960s, killing by lynching or hanging was inflicted on both Black and white victims, but there were sharp regional differences. Almost eighty percent of lynchings of Black victims occurred in the South, with the highest numbers in Mississippi, Georgia, and Texas.

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