The Southern Press

Trade Paper – $24.95

ISBN 978-0-8101-2394-6
Publication Date
May 2009
Page Count
342 pages
Trim Size
5.25 x 8

The Southern Press

Literary Legacies and the Challenge of Modernity
Doug Cumming


The Southern Press suggests that the South’s journalism struck a literary pose closer to the older English press than to the democratic penny press or bourgeois magazines of the urban North. The Southern journalist was more likely to be a Romantic and an intellectual. The region’s journalism was personal, colorful, and steeped in the classics. News was less important than narrative. Neither "public" nor "opinion" had much meaning in a racially segregated South. Paradoxically, it was this nonreformist literary tradition that produced liberal southern editors, from Henry Grady to Ralph McGill, who were viewed in the North as both explainers of and dissidents from the South.

About the Author

Doug Cumming is an assistant professor of journalism at Washington and Lee University, a former Nieman Fellow, and a George Polk Award-winning journalist. He lives in Lexington, VA.
Hodding Carter III is a professor of Public Policy at the Center for the Study of the American South at the University of North Carolina, a former Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, and the author of The Reagan Years and The South Strikes Back. He lives in Chapel Hill, NC.