In this century, no region of the country has experienced greater social upheaval or undergone a more dramatic political transformation than the South. This book critically examines the magnitude of these changes, the individuals who made them happen, and their influence on the rest of the nation. Noted historians Bruce Clayton and John Salmond explore the mind of the "new South", from the pivotal 1920s to the tempestuous '60s. Clayton 's focus is on the intellectual and artistic achievements of the period -a time of immense creativity, when southern literary giants like William Faulkner, Zora Neale Hurston, and Robert Penn Warren rose to international prominence. Salmond's essay focuses not on ideas but actions, his primary concern is the activist and organisations that created the ambitious agenda formulated by the great thinkers of the day. He pays particular attention tot he legacy of southern labour organisers, especially in the textile industry, who led a series of critical strikes between the 1920s and 1940s that reshaped the region' manufacturing landscape.
Following the essays are an overview of the subject and a selection of relevant documents that allow readers to draw their own conclusions about this complex period in American history.
Bruce Clayton is professor of history at Allegheny College, Meadville, Pennsylvania. John Salmond is professor of history at LaTrobe University, Melbourne, Australia.