1932

Abstract

Recent years have seen a renewed interest in southern distinctiveness within the United States and its ramifications for the nation. This review provides an analysis of recent works and the interpretive issues they raise. I argue that collectively they have broken with the long-established image of the South in political science, the study of which was long organized around the region's anticipated convergence to the patterns of the post–New Deal North. Recent texts have instead emphasized an enduring commitment to white supremacy and a determining influence for the region in shaping national politics and institutions. I identify two broad pathways of southern influence and discuss the debates over its sources. I then discuss recent works on southern regimes and the debates these have provoked. I conclude by suggesting that overcoming the limits of recent works will ultimately undermine some of our more sweeping interpretive claims and foundational premises.

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2023-06-15
2024-04-15
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