A Southern Thing

For Southern historians, the Drive-by Truckers and the Southern Renaissance writers before them, the “Southern Thing” is an individual tug-of-war between pride and regret: the pride of belonging to a special place with a separate history, speaking in a distinct accent, and the feeling of discomfort, too, about some of that history and attitude.

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The Rise of the New Right

With the passing of each gubernatorial, congressional, or presidential election, either the nation was longing for roots and tradition, retreating to the political right from a maelstrom of modernity, or Americans were building new liberal coalitions. For writers and scholars to put forward as a hypothesis that the birth or reemergence of a political tradition corresponds to the death of its counterpart ignores the fact that Americans are never as united as commentators claim. 

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