Tuesday, March 6, 2007

"Southern Pasts": A new, must-read blog

I just came across a new (two week old) blog, Southern Pasts. The "sub-title," if that's the right word, is "The past is not dead," the first half of a famous line from William Faulkner's Requiem for a Nun; the conclusion, "it's not even past," proves that Faulkner was one of the greatest southern historians ever.

Southern Pasts is beautiful in both its layout and its writing. The author introduces it thusly:

The title of this blog, Southern Pasts, borrows from the titles of two books on the history of the South. The first is Fitzhugh Brundage’s recent monograph, The Southern Past: A Clash of Race and Memory. The second is Melton McLaurin’s award-winning memoir, Separate Pasts: Growing Up White in the Segregated South.

Given its namesakes, this blog will address issues related to southern history and how people remember it, particularly with regard to race. I deliberately chose McLaurin’s plural “pasts” because I believe that the South is a region with a still largely segregated understanding of the past. In terms of historical memory in the South, there are often (as the cliche goes) two sides to every story.

One of my goals as a historian is to complicate (dare I say, integrate?) the “separate pasts” of the South, both black and white, and it is with this goal in mind that I began this blog.

I urge you to read it.

Best wishes, Southern Pasts!