‘The entire US is southern!’ How our troubled racial historical past went nationwide

UK Guardian: In 1974, the good southern journalist John Egerton wrote a prescient e-book entitled…

UK Guardian: In 1974, the good southern journalist John Egerton wrote a prescient e-book entitled The Americanization of Dixie: The Southernization of America.

In a collection of related however self-contained essays, he made the purpose that one thing elementary was altering – each in his native south, and within the nation as an entire. However even Egerton appeared not to make certain precisely how issues would unfold.

He was, as these of us who knew him may attest, one of many nice and delicate souls of his time, a person deeply dedicated to racial justice who wished badly to consider that it will be a superb factor if this troubled place by which he lived – this a part of America that had as soon as fought a battle for the suitable to personal slaves – may emerge from the strife of the civil rights years in some way chastened and wiser for the journey; if it may slender its distance from the remainder of the nation and even perhaps lead it towards higher days.

That was the hope. However Egerton, as was his behavior, noticed darker potentialities as properly. Giving voice to his fears, he wrote:

The South and the nation aren’t exchanging strengths as a lot as they’re exchanging sins; most of the time, they’re sharing and spreading the worst in one another, whereas the most effective languishes and withers.

For some time it was straightforward sufficient to make the case that Egerton’s gloom was misplaced, or not less than overstated. The anecdotal proof was throughout.  Learn extra..

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