Judgment and Grace in Dixie
Southern Faiths from Faulkner to Elvis

Charles Reagan Wilson
Photographs by Tom Rankin and Susan B. Lee
With a new preface

Religion, culture, and the modern South


"Wilson writes in a clear and entertaining style with insight and sympathy. He understands and explains the pervasive religious mindset of the South."
Library Journal

"A brilliant excavation of religious strains in the southern psyche."

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Religion has permeated nearly every aspect of modern southern culture, with results that range from portraits of Jesus on black velvet to the soul-stirring orations of Martin Luther King Jr. In Judgment and Grace in Dixie, Charles Reagan Wilson makes a lively appraisal of religion's influence on such expressions of regional life as literature, music, and folk art, as well as on such public spectacles as football games and beauty pageants.

Wilson's focus is on popular religion--evangelical Protestantism as embraced at the grassroots level, where distinctions between the sacred and secular are blurred and belief in the supernatural remains strong. As he traces the development and meaning of popular religion and pop culture, Wilson ranges widely across a spiritual landscape rich in iconic accumulations of people, places, events, and artifacts--church fans and Elvis Presley memorabilia, the painting of Howard Finster and the songs of Hank Williams, the Scopes trial and the death of Bear Bryant.

Page count: 234 pp.
Trim size: 6.125 x 9.25


List price: $26.95

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Charles Reagan Wilson is Kelly Gene Cook, Sr., Chair in History and Professor of Southern Studies at the University of Mississippi. He is the author of Judgment and Grace in Dixie: Southern Faiths from Faulkner to Elvis, Baptized in Blood: The Religion of the Lost Cause, 1865–1920, (both Georgia) and general editor of The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture.