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1001 Things Everyone Should Know/South [Paperback]

John Reed , Dale Volberg Reed
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

June 16 1997
In 1,001 short, eminently readable mini-essays, Dixieologists John Shelton Reed and Dale Volberg Reed illuminate every nook and cranny of this fertile land and culture, clarifying with an authoritative but humorous touch what everyone should know about the South but probably doesn't. Interspersed with their incisive entries on history, politics, life, and literature in this great collection of Southern trivia is a whole mess of fun facts--like how barbecue differs from state to state, where kudzu originally came from, why chivalry is so important to Southern males, and how bluegrass music first developed.

From Stonewall Jackson to Mahalia Jackson, from William Byrd to "Free Bird," 1001 Things Everyone Should Know About the South covers it all.

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From Amazon

The South is different from the rest of the United States, and it's not just because most folks who live there speak with a southern drawl. In 1001 Things Everyone Should Know About the South authors John Shelton Reed and Dale Volberg Reed, both Southern academics, examine the ideologies and traditions the have historically set the South apart from the rest of America. Topical sections include "The Central Theme: Race and Politics" and "Grit Lit: Literature" and cover such diverse subjects as Bourbon Street, clogging and Paul "Bear" Bryant. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

The publication of the massive one-volume Encyclopedia of Southern Culture (LJ 7/89) gave librarians, historians, sociologists, and other researchers a treasure trove of invaluable information about the American South. Both of these new works continue to inquire into the peculiarities and distinctiveness of Southernness; both define the South as the 11 Confederate states plus West Virginia, Kentucky, and Maryland (1001 Things adds Oklahoma and Missouri to the list). The Reeds, both Southern academics, provide a cornucopia of succinct information that has historically made the South different from the rest of America. They divide their work into 12 broad topical sections such as "The Central Theme: Race and Politics" and "Grit Lit: Literature." Short paragraphs, often punctuated by photographs and illustrations, cover such diverse subjects as Bourbon Street, clogging, and Paul "Bear" Bryant. Howorth (Univ. of Mississippi) capitalizes on the trend of trivial pursuit publications. Her work offers a total of 762 questions with answers based on articles that appear in the Encyclopedia of Southern Culture. The quiz book is divided into eight broad topical sections such as music and entertainment, literature, sports and recreation, the land, and art and architecture, with an average of 90 questions per section. Some questions are truly trivial, while others are thought-provoking, such as "What technological innovation has changed the nature of Southern life most dramatically?" Answer: Air conditioning. If that keen observer of Southern manners, Lewis Grizzard, were still alive he would no doubt enjoy these offbeat yet informative books. Recommended for public and undergraduate academic libraries.
Charles C. Hay, Eastern Kentucky Univ. Libs., Richmond
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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5.0 out of 5 stars Slowing Down July 19 2001
Slowing down along all those back roads of the world that is the South is the only way to appreciate the unique outlook of the southern spirit where life and events are often taken with a grain of salt due to the fact that the important things were the same yesterday, and the day before, and all the days before that. Emotional health is probably the most valued commodity, and perhaps the most scrutinized quality of southern communities. In many cases, it is the most important development to watch and gauge since much of the south is far from the pyramids of power that are often created in locations like New York, Washington, D.C., Chicago or Los Angeles. It is eons away from foreign influences of Paris, London, Asia or Japan. The living is easy and the sun is hot requiring local dynamics to be the most valuable in terms of acceptance. It gives a new meaning to the idea of majority and minority but not necessarily confined to color. To know the south, time spent there is a must. Southerners appreciate the meaning of home grown and honor their own perspective on life, which sometimes isn't the same as it is in other parts of the country. Rebel yells have a different meaning than up north and don't always reflect the civil war years. It helps to understand Hank Williams, Jr. and some of the other country singers who have it in their blood. 1,0001 facts about the south can only help people appreciate this unique part of the country where life is meant to be savored, not swift. It is greatly aided by a partner of commensurable sentiments.
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Born in Texas of Texan parents, but raised outside the South (except for six years or so in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC, which aren't nearly as Southern as they used to be), I've always felt self-consciously removed from what I'd like to consider my heritage. Thanks to John Shelton Reed and Dale Volberg Reed's great book, I've not only discovered I'm more Southern than I realized, but know a lot more about that section of the country than I did before.
'1001 Things Everyone Should Know about the South' is a book anyone can open at random and start reading anywhere. But if you read it straight through, systematically, I'm willing to guarantee almost anyone they'll discover things about the South they never knew before.
This book is not a fancied-up version of 'You Know You're a Redneck When ...'.
The Reeds are serious researchers and writers, and they look at the South through the lenses of history, geography, ethnology, linguistics, religion, art, music, literature, architecture, cooking, politics, economics, and more. There are the obligatory sections on the Confederacy and the War, of course, but the Reeds understand, as other historians and writers have also noted, that the CSA was a period of barely five years out of more than 400 years of Southern history. (One of the things everyone should know about the South is that there were European settlers in Virginia, Texas, and Florida before anyone save Native Americans had set foot on Plymouth Rock.) This is one of the things that made '1001 Things ...' a far more satisfying book for me than was Michael Andrew Grissom's 'Southern by the Grace of God,' which had a tendency to view everything through the prism of the War.
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This book is a delight. It's not a treatise for reading straight through but more a dipper's delight.
This book covers nearly everything anybody could reasonably want to know about The South - and a great deal more. The authors' treatment is rather eclectic - some major Southern indicia get fairly cursory treatment whilst some trivia get dwelt upon lovingly. I loved the treatment of Moon Pie - a delicacy unknown to European shores.
The Reeds have done an excellent job of combining scholarship with lightness of touch. The format is one of brief entries on topics (approx 100-500 words) loosely but alphabetically arranged by theme. It nicely complements John Shelton Reed's "My tears spoiled my aim" without covering the same ground.
Leave a copy in your bathroom - your guests will thank you!
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5.0 out of 5 stars About time! Feb. 17 2004
By A Customer
It's about time someone compiled this valuable data concerning one of the country's most interesting areas. This book is great for Yankees AND Southerners alike. The most wonderful thing about this book is that you'll find out what some of those expressions, terms, and shibboleths mean--the ones you always heard but were afraid to ask about for fear of being labeled ignorant of your own culture! A must-have for anyone interested in the culture of America and especially the South. Highly recommend this book along with McCrae's BARK OF THE DOGWOOD--a fascinating read about Southern culture and what it means to be from the South.
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