Looking back at the “New” South

The Alabama Archives continues its curiously named “ArchiTreats” lunchtime lecture series, and I really want to drive down to Montgomery and attend the one this Thursday at noon.

For one thing, I’m a fan of the speaker, Marlene Rikard (Samford University). For another, the topic is the inescapable “New South” — a concept that was moth-eaten by 1930, yet lives on in present-day political rhetoric, as if it actually meant something. I expect that Dr. Rikard’s talk, billed as “a social and economic view” of the New South, will give us an idea of what it actually has meant. After all, the “New South” (invented, funnily enough, by some of the same people who cooked up the “Old South”) is well into its second century; in fact, its timespan conforms pretty neatly to that of Birmingham, Alabama. And Birmingham is not a young city, not by American standards anyway.

Bring a lunch, if you want, to the auditorium at 624 Washington Street, Montgomery. Drinks are provided free. Info is at (334) 353-4712 or the website.

There’s a Subway on Dexter Avenue if you want to pick something up on the way.

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