Book Fridays: the Real South, the War on Poverty, and stories from New Orleans

Facing South's bi-weekly listing features new books about the U.S. South and books written by Southern writers.

Perpetual Care: Stories by James Nolan, 239 pages, Jefferson Press (May 2008)

Perpetual Care, the winner of the 2007 Jefferson Prize in Fiction, is the first short story collection by New Orleans poet, critic and essayist James Noland. The collection provides a window into the lives of post-Katrina New Orleans residents and into the neighborhoods they inhabit. According to the Seattle Times, "the ghost of Tennessee Williams haunts this fine debut collection of stories. But it's New Orleans, in all its seamy, sultry, dilapidated glory that is the book's protagonist." The Times Picayune said "[New Orleans'] long conversation with itself has never been louder or more insistent than it is in these stories, with all their exuberance, despair and wit."

For more information on the book visit Jefferson Press.


The Real South: Southern Narrative in the Age of Cultural Reproduction by Scott Romine, 336 pages, Louisiana State University Press (June 2008)

Scott Romine's study explores the impact of globalization on contemporary southern culture and the South's persistence in an age of media and what he terms "cultural reproduction." The Real South explores a wide range of southern narratives that describe and travel through virtual, simulated, and commodified Souths. Where earlier critics have tended to assume a real or authentic South, Romine questions such assumptions and whether the "authentic South" ever truly existed.

For more information please visit Louisiana State University Press.


Carry It On: The War on Poverty and the Civil Rights Movement in Alabama, 1964-1972 by Susan Youngblood Ashmore, University of Georgia Press, July 2008

Carry It On is an in-depth study of how the local struggle for equality in Alabama fared in the wake of new federal laws-the Civil Rights Act, the Economic Opportunity Act, and the Voting Rights Act. Susan Youngblood Ashmore focuses on the Alabama Black Belt and on the local projects funded by the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO), the federal agency that supported programs in a variety of cities and towns in Alabama. Ashmore looks closely at the interactions among local activists, elected officials, businesspeople, landowners, bureaucrats, and others who were involved in or affected by OEO projects.

For more information please visit University of Georgia Press.