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Grant number like: FT-56918-09

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Joseph Crespino
Emory University (Atlanta, GA 30322-1018)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2009 – 7/31/2009

Strom Thurmond's America

I am writing a political biography of Strom Thurmond, the longtime U.S. Senator from South Carolina, yet this book is not a conventional biography. It will use Thurmond's life and career as a lens through which to interpret and analyze the role that white southerners played in shaping modern conservative politics in the second half of the twentieth century. Thurmond's story is important because he has long served as an avatar of the Republican "southern strategy", the effort to lure away traditional southern white Democrats to the GOP by exploiting their racial resentment of civil rights. This narrative of the racist origins of the modern right is one of the more controversial topics in contemporary American politics. My book will provide the most dispassionate, historically contextualized and analytically nuanced story to date of the role that Thurmond and other conservative white southerners like him played in shaping modern conservative politics.