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Tom Wolfe: What's Southern Today? by Tom Wolfe

Tom Wolfe: What's Southern Today?

by Tom Wolfe

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1 Hr. 20 Min.
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  1.0  Stars Based on 2 ratings
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In this streaming video offered by C-SPAN, author Tom Wolfe talks about the South as it is today. He provides observations about going to a NASCAR event, the origins of the term redneck, and the history of the right to own a gun in the South. Wolfe also fields questions from the audience about his career and he lets us know what he's reading now. This entertaining hour-long video is available on C-SPAN.


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T. Wolfe gets it wrong...
Reviewer RossBallard
 May 23, 2008
While T. Wolfe attempts to become the new Mark Twain his book on the South is so full of stereotypes and cliché it's hard not to bury it in the back yard instead of finishing it. For example, his reference at a recent appearance at Duke University's Festival of the Book, to the origin of the term 'Redneck' is so far off base that it borders on an impromptu guess. No, Mr. Wolfe, no. While it may be obvious that the lowly farmer endures many sunny days bent over in the field to acquire his BROWN workingman's tan on his neck, the popularity of the term REDNECK was penned by a New York newspaper reporter at the site of America's largest civil insurrection after the Civil War; The Battle of Blair Mountain in Southern West Virginia. In that week of early September 1921 a massive and well formed citizens army of coal miners and supporters who numbered well past 10,000 marched from Lens Creek, WV to Blair Mountain in an attempt to set free hundreds of non-union miners being kept in makeshift prison camps in Mingo County some 100 miles away. The miners army, in desperate need of self identification since few had actual uniforms, tied RED bandanas around their necks to prevent any Friendly Fire incidents. The New York papers referred to this long forgotten shame in American history as The Battle of the Redneck Army. Clashing with 3000 well armed deputy sheriffs and conscripts from local jails, the infamous Sheriff Don Chaffin and his WHITE army made a stand on Logan County's Blair Mountain. Several new documentaries have uncovered this week long battle brought to a close only after President Harding sent in troops and 8 Martin B1B bombers to the site to kill the miners. The famous Gen. Billy Mitchell wanted, some say needed, to prove that airpower could be used to quell civil unrest. Blair Mountain gave him that opportunity. MountainWhispers.com Audiobooks carries a great version of William C. Blizzard's book "When Miners March - The Battle of Blair Mountain" A recent History Channel documentary "Hillbilly: The Real Story" uncovers this incident AND the term Redneck quite well. Good luck with your books Mr. Wolfe, but please get it right.

Ross Ballard...

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  • LearnOutLoud.com Product ID: T026849