The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 77, July 1973 - April, 1974

Book Reviews

who grows up in Texas can refer back to a single nostalgia-permeated home
town. Porterfield is the first I know to effectively say so.
The thirteen essays of Growing Up in Texas are uneven in quality. One
senses, moreover, a certain artificiality in some of them. Perhaps this is in-
evitable. It is difficult at best to write well about growing up, avoiding
cliches and self-consciousness. To do so for an anthology, and so (one as-
sumes) without long forethought, is bound to be doubly so. In spite of its
weaknesses, however, Growing Up in Texas makes interesting reading.
There is nothing wrong with an occasional exercise in nostalgia. Moreover,
I would recommend this book strongly to those unfamiliar with the Lone
Star State: it is a good personal introduction to the vagaries of that state,
twentieth-century style.
The volume is well designed and attractive, and the woodcut illustrations
by Barbara Whitehead are excellent.
North Texas State University PETE GUNTER
Another Look at the Twentieth-Century South. By George E. Mowry. (Ba-
ton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1972. Pp. ix+90.
$4.95.)
These three essays were originally delivered as the Walter Lynwood Flem-
ing Lectures in Southern History at Louisiana State University. In the first,
George E. Mowry challenges the popular assumption that the South's his-
tory has been unique among the regions of the country. His thesis is that
since I9oo "southern history without the black would have been very little
different" from that of an area he calls the western Middle West-Minne-
sota, Iowa, Missouri, North and South Dakota, Kansas, and Nebraska.
While substantial differences existed, the two sections until World War II,
at least, were remarkably alike in racial stock, economic conditions, one-
party politics, folk culture, and social attitudes.
In the other two essays Mowry examines the paradox of southern con-
servatism. Noting that for over fifty years conservative southern congress-
men supported most New Freedom and New Deal reforms, he resolves the
paradox by demonstrating that a class-conscious southern power elite has
"traded-off" with the northern Democratic party to maintain southern
racial and wage policies. Ulrich B. Phillip's classic formulation of the cen-
tral theme of southern history, he suggests, might be amended for the recent
South to read, "shall be and remain an upper-class white man's country."
Historians of the South should welcome the efforts of distinguished non-
southern scholars like Mowry to examine from other angles of vision com-

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 77, July 1973 - April, 1974. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117148/. Accessed August 23, 2014.