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Online course

The American South

Explore the fascinating history and culture of the American South from colonial times to the 21st century.

What’s the difference between a free course and an upgraded course?

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

The American South

Why join the course?

The South is among the most important, yet most misrepresented regions of the United States. This course explores many aspects of southern life, culture, politics and history from colonial times to the present day, focusing on the nature and extent of southern distinctiveness.

The South has a reputation for violence, racism, sexism and other forms of bigotry, but also for friendliness, hospitality, popular culture, and a strong commitment to family, heritage, and community. The course will examine how these understandings and misunderstandings of the South came into being and changed over time.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 8 secondsHello, and welcome to this course on the History and Culture of the American South. My name is Brian Ward and I'm a Professor in American Studies at Northumbria University. Together with a team of experts on all things Southern, I'll be your guide for what we hope will be an enjoyable and illuminating exploration of some of the key events, people, movements, and themes connected with the US South. It's a fascinating, complex region that, as we'll discover together, has exerted enormous influence on the history, politics and cultures of the United States, and indeed on the rest of the world.

Skip to 0 minutes and 39 secondsIn sum then, this course allows you to engage with the history of a region that has been by turns enchanting and exasperating, a source of deep fear and loathing, but also of deep admiration, endless fascination, and no little imitation. It's a place of enormous poverty, racial intolerance, religious bigotry, ill health, and violence. Yet it's also a site of tremendous creativity with a well-earned reputation for openness, hospitality, good living, and a deep respect for family, place, god and history. With a course that takes us from Robert E.

Skip to 1 minute and 7 secondsLee to Harper Lee, from the Ku Klux Klan to the Kings of Leon, from Coca-cola to Kudzu, and from Gone With the Wind to Hurricane Katrina, we can promise you an exhilarating and thought provoking introduction to the enigma that is the American South.

What topics will you cover?

  • Identity (including race, gender, and class)
  • War and Reconciliation
  • Social Activism and Justice
  • Contemporary and Historical Politics
  • Popular Culture

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the history and culture of the American South.
  • Investigate the question of regional distinctiveness in the United States.
  • Identify key icons, events, themes in the history and culture of the American South.

Who is the course for?

There are no special requirements for this course but an interest in history or American culture might be useful.

Who will you learn with?

Brian Ward

I am Northumbria University’s first Professor in American Studies and my teaching and research focuses on the modern US South, the African American Experience, and popular music.

Megan Hunt

I'm an Associate Lecturer in Humanities at Northumbria University, currently finishing up my PhD on the American South in Hollywood film. I am specifically interested in the civil rights era.

Who developed the course?

Northumbria University is a research-rich, business-focused, professional university with a global reputation for academic excellence.

What’s the difference between a free course and an upgraded course?

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Get extra benefits, upgrade this course. For $74 you'll get:

Unlimited access

Upgrading will mean you get unlimited access to the course.

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  • Take the course at your own pace
  • Refer to the material at any point in future

If you’re taking a course for free you have access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join. If you upgrade the course you have access for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn.

Certificate of Achievement

Upgrading means you’ll receive a Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course.

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  • Prove your success when applying for jobs or courses
  • Celebrate your hard work
  • Display on your LinkedIn or CV
  • Includes free shipping

To receive a Certificate of Achievement you need to mark 90% of the steps on the course as complete.

Upgrade


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