Southern Cultures

Journal covering the history, politics, folklore, art, literature and social structure of the Southern U.S.

Articles from Vol. 4, No. 1, Spring

A Political Paradox: North Carolina's Twenty-Five Years under Jim Hunt and Jesse Helms
January 11, 1997, was a frigid Saturday with the sort of clinging cold that stings the ears and numbs the toes. Still, about five thousand citizens of North Carolina gathered outdoors on the wide lawn in front of Broughton High School near downtown...
Between a Rock and a Hard Place: South Carolin'a Republican Presidential Primary
The "rock" in this case is the Granite State of New Hampshire; the "hard place" is the South, where Republican candidates for any office have had a hard row to hoe over the last century. How could a Republican even get on a ballot after "Mr. Lincoln's...
Follow the Money
The image of Alabama and its politics--from dogs and hoses in Birmingham, to George Wallace standing in the doorway of the university in Tuscaloosa, to a Gadsden judge who insists on hanging the Ten Commandments in his courtroom--is negative, primitive,...
"He Put His Thumb Up to His Nose, and Twirl'd His Fingers at His Foes"
[Whigs, Now's the Time, Vote and Sing, Sing and Vote --National Clay Melodist (1844) On 17 August 1844, a Tennessee schoolteacher named Jason Niles joined a large crowd of spectators to watch the raising of a "Clay pole" celebrating the Whig party's...
High Costs of Wining - and Losing
The shift from party-centered campaigns to candidate-centered campaigns has contributed to the escalation of the costs of running for elective office in the United States. In the modern era, heavy use of television, radio, and direct mail has emerged...
Mule Train: A Thirty-Year Perspective on the Southern Christian Leadership Conference's Poor People's Campaign of 1968
INTRODUCTION On 16 September 1997, civil rights activist Bertha Luster called me from Marks, Mississippi. I had first met Ms. Luster and her six children in 1968 on the Mule Train, part of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference's (SCLC)...
Reflections on Redistricting (Balance in Redistricting Southern States)
Editor's note: Dan Blue, a lawyer in Raleigh, has served in the North Carolina House of Representatives since 1981 and thus has had to deal with both legislative and congressional redistricting following the 1980 and 1990 Censuses. In 1991 Blue was...
Rhapsodies in Black: Art of the Harlem Renaissance
Reviewed by Dale Volberg Reed, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. She is the coauthor, with John Shelton Reed, of 1001 Things Everyone Should Know about the South. The cultural life of Harlem in the 1920s and 1930s was largely the creation of southern expatriates....
Store Lunch
Throughout the rural South, men with regular business in the country--hunters, fishermen, farmers, surveyors, and traveling agents of various trades--traditionally enjoy a repast known as the Store Lunch. I say "men" advisedly, for this tends to be a...
The Black and the Gray: An Interview with Tony Horwitz
Editors' note: Tony Horwitz is a Virginia-based reporter for The Wall Street Journal and the author, most recently, of Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches From the Unfinished Civil War, to be published by Pantheon in March of 1998. While researching...
"The Dread Handwriting Is on the Wall": Confronting the New Republican South
"Today they face each other in the State, these two, the Republicans and the Democrats, the Republicans greasy-mouthed, shining-eyed, the Democrats gaunt, distinctly unhappy ... the dread handwriting is on the wall: North Carolina is going Republican."...
Van the Flower of Southern Womanhood Bloom in the Garden of Southern Politics?
Ah, the flower of southern womanhood: gracious, lovely, and charming. Many features of southern culture have changed greatly over time. In one way, though, the South retains its distinctiveness: it remains the region of the country least hospitable...
Whither Southern Republicans?
If the truth be known, many southern Republicans are pinching themselves as the 1998 election approaches, amazed at and wondering about the extent of their success. Consider recent Republican accomplishments in the formerly Democratic "Solid South."...