In the contemporary era of ruthless deracination termed “globalization,” place-related symbols, demands, and affinities are becoming countervailing sources of resistance. Never self-evident, never “given,” place is coming alive as a potent force in the hands of those who understand its critical, democratic, and collective potentials, and are able to harness its emotive and symbolic powers for progressive political organizing. This lecture engages the politics of place to interrogate the contradictory possibilities of place-attachment in the contemporary U.S. South and to illuminate the theoretical meanings of place as a political resource. What understandings of place contribute to divergent political agendas (e.g., the “southern way of life” vs. progressive global connections)? What are the limitations and insights of these varying perspectives?

Professor Smith is a professor of Sociology and the Director of Women's & Gender Studies at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

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Hutchins Lectures Spring 2011

CSAS Plus

The Center for the Study of the American South brings scholars from across the nation to UNC-Chapel Hill for its Hutchins Lectures Series on southern arts and letters.

The Hutchins Lectures are generously funded by the Hutchins Family Foundation


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The Center for the Study of the American South brings scholars from across the nation to UNC-Chapel Hill for its Hutchins Lectures Series on southern arts and letters.

The Hutchins Lectures are generously funded by the Hutchins Family Foundation with in-kind support from UNC's Johnston Center for Undergraduate Excellence.

For information about the Center, including past Hutchins Lectures, please visit uncsouth.org.

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