The Confederate Flag Is Not a Symbol of the South

A ‘New South’ needs new symbology As a French-Canadian immigrant to North Carolina in my youth, seeing the Confederate flag sitting atop poles and donned on t-shirts and bumper stickers was a normal, albeit strange sight. In school, we learned the Confederacy was defeated in a bloody civil war. In the end, the slaves were freed from bondage and the South was put through Reconstruction and occupied by Union troops. The Confederate States of America was a failed and immoral experiment that was put down as quickly as it sprung up, but its symbols — especially the flag and statues […]

We Need New Symbols of Southern Pride

As a French-Canadian immigrant to North Carolina in my youth, seeing the Confederate colors atop flagpoles and donned on t-shirts and bumper stickers was a normal, albeit strange, sight. In school, we learned that the Confederacy was defeated in a bloody civil war. In the end, the slaves were freed from bondage and the South was put through Reconstruction and occupied by Union troops—the Confederate States of America was a failed and immoral experiment that was put down as quickly as it sprung up. But its symbols, especially the flag and statues of generals, live on. That is true even […]

What will be the legacy of the New South?

Once again, the eyes of the nation, and indeed the world, are transfixed on the tale of the American south. The dust of the violent and deadly clashes in the streets of the college town of Charlottesville between right-wing and left-wing fascists has settled and self-reflection has begun. For many around the world, the American south remains an odd place with many strange rituals and a bewildering anachronism in the form of a glorified Confederate past. Young school children are taught about the evils of slavery and the Civil War, the desegregation of schools and the racist stubbornness of Alabama […]