Tag: The South

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I subscribe to Book Bub, which highlights Kindle sales, so I purchase books for $1.99 and don’t have much to lose. Often, there’s a lot to gain, as a number of these bargains turn out to be gratifying reads. Books on sale can be featured again later, so here are three to consider when their prices are lowered.  I […]

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Regionalism is rapidly disappearing in America. I work regularly among Texans and there’s never a drawl. And except for dropping an occasional “y’all,” my friends from Atlanta and Charlotte could easily be pegged as hailing from the ‘burbs of Chicago. It has taken decades of mass media to do it, but slowly and surely our […]

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  I woke up this morning to hear of the death of Pat Conroy. In my opinion he was not only one of the best writers about the South, the low country of South Carolina in particular, he was one of THE great American authors and story tellers. His well known books include The Prince of Tides, […]

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The Urge to Purge

 

HoopSkirtAs I’ve said before, the primitive desire to purge our society of anything that makes us feel bad, particularly things that relate to history (no matter how far removed we are from the events in question) will continue, unabated, until people stand up and say “enough.”

Consider this opinion piece in the Washington Post, headlined “Remove the Southern belle from her inglorious perch.” The author, Elizabeth Boyd, makes the case for banning the hoop skirt. Yes, you read that correctly: The hoop skirt must be banned. But that’s not all.

Boyd, a “research associate in American Studies at the University of Maryland,” predictably trots out Dylan Roof’s murderous rampage as the rhetorical foot-in-the-door before urging the elimination of not only the Confederate flag, but a whole laundry list of cultural artifacts she connects to evil.

Losing the Right to Be Southern

 

lonestar_lgUp until last Wednesday night at about 8 o’clock, I could — that with the right degree or irony and humor — introduce myself as “a white, Christian, Southern bigot,” though sometimes the order of the words change. Most people would laugh, understanding the heavy irony I was employing.

You have to have a well-developed sense of irony and humor to live in the South. Our history and its contradictions are simply too great. That’s what Dylann Roof took away from white southerners last week; it doesn’t compare to the lives he snuffed out in Charleston, but it hurts nonetheless. Dylann Roof took away our right to be ironic about being a southerner and the right to be humorous about it. He may as well have taken away our identity.

Southern identity is a strange thing. The Agrarian philosopher Richard Weaver once said it is almost spiritual, akin to being a Catholic or a Jew. I am not quite sure I would go that far, but I do understand where Weaver was coming from. There are many of us who consider ourselves southern before we consider ourselves American; a “country within a country,” as the historians have put it. I suppose, according to many bloggers this week, that makes us traitors.

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As I stated in Brian’s thread about the South’s heritage, the Rebel flag remains the only universally recognized symbol for Southern culture and any symbol that replaced it would be decried as racist as well. Many people cannot consider the South apart from the Confederate States of America or segregation history. That’s their problem.  But let’s […]

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