A Word on Historiography

They habitually address us as if nothing but the purblind ignorance of the very first elements of moral science could shield our minds against the force of their irresistible arguments. In the overflowing exuberance of their philanthropy, they take pity of our most lamentable moral darkness, and graciously condescend to teach us the very A B Cs of ethical philosophy!

Albert Taylor Bledsoe

Some may wonder at the perhaps excessive emphasis placed on history at this blog. There are two reasons for this: one, it’s the area I know best and am most interested in studying; and two, an accurate picture of history is absolutely critical to understanding the principles of Reaction and translating them to our contemporary age, especially for Southerners.

Because we have been relatively effective at retarding the onslaught of Progressive infection over the past century and a half, Southerners as a thede can still trace our cultural lineage back to tried-and-true Reactionary ancestors – dedicated warriors, wise theologians, and patriarchal slaveholders. The goal of Southern Reaction is to preserve and reinvigorate that tradition; it cannot be done while the bastardized liberal interpretation of Southern history remains promulgated.

Southerners are tied to their history like no one else in the US, maybe in the entire Occident. Mention the South, and it is historical images which come to mind. Slaves picking cotton; hillbillies making moonshine; “Whites Only” water fountains; Pickett’s Charge; Robert E. Lee; George Wallace. To revive the Southern tradition necessitates ridding our history of the foul stench of liberal revisionism. Confederate General Cleburne, like most of his contemporaries, possessed the mysterious crystal ball of wisdom:

Every man should endeavor to understand the meaning of subjugation before it is too late… It means the history of this heroic struggle will be written by the enemy; that our youth will be trained by Northern schoolteachers; will learn from Northern school books their version of the war; will be impressed by the influences of history and education to regard our gallant dead as traitors, and our maimed veterans as fit objects for derision…

The premise of Southern Reaction with regard to our history is really quite simple: our ancestors as a whole were at least as possessed of their intellectual and moral faculties as any other society in the West. Thus, “evils” like slavery and Jim Crow cannot simply be written off as “Well, they didn’t know better” as many modern Southerners are prone to do. God does not countenance moral relativism; we have examined our history in light of God’s eternal laws and, instead of evil and darkness, we found goodness and light.

Thus, one of my primary goals here at LTC is to deconstruct the liberal interpretation of Southern history, bit-by-bit, and present what I believe is the “correct” view of history. A caveat:

While I don’t claim to be without bias I refuse to fall into the trap of ancestor-worship; I strive to make balanced judgments on the good and bad aspects of our history and (dormant) civilisation. There are a great many of both. An accurate picture of our past is absolutely critical to both the proper vindication (and overlooked criticism) of our ancestors and the assessment of how we might utilize our tradition to influence the future of our people. I said in a previous post that we take a critical view the Southern tradition so that we might trim the fat, so to speak; while that may be a bit hard to believe, coming from a man who defends Southern slavery, it is nonetheless true. Once completely scrubbed of Leftist Narrative-building influence, by which it’s been beset since 1865, Southern history takes on quite a different shape than anyone nowadays – even most Southern Nationalists and neo-Confederates – is willing to promote.

We acknowledge the greatness of Jefferson and Madison while fully appreciating the dire results which adoption of their liberal-egalitarian heresies brings. We view slavery as overall beneficial for both blacks and whites, and Jim Crow as an unfortunate but necessary reaction to the destruction of the civilising influence of slavery. We see the New South as traitors within the gates, working a pernicious influence, modernizing and destroying the traditional South from the inside. We see the peasant populism endemic to 20th century Southern politics as a negative result of the removal of the old aristocracy, undoubtedly the greatest calamity which our people have suffered. We regard the Old South, circa 1850, as the pinnacle of the young Southern civilisation and thus work to understand the principles which undergirded their worldview so that we might again return the South to the road of true progress – civilisation building. You will find an honest assessment of these principles almost nowhere nowadays; therefore we look to primary sources as well as the titans of Southern traditionalist conservatism.

Permit me a quick plug: If we were able to measure and graph Leftist influence in the South from the American Revolution to the modern day, it would look something like an inverted bell curve, with the 1850-1860 decade in the middle, lowest point. The South at that time was barreling towards a flat-out rejection of the Enlightenment in favor of the feudal, hierarchical view of society which characterized the European medieval period. No one illustrates this “Reactionary Enlightenment” more ably than Virginian George Fitzhugh, and thus I have spoken of him as the leading historical representative of Southern Reaction. Anyone calling themselves a Southern Reactionary, or interested in our views, needs to read Sociology for the South and Cannibals All! We’ll be here when you get back.

Anyway, back to my original point. Here we seek to set the history of the South aright, judging by the principles which stimulated Western Civilisation to towering heights, not those which are responsible for its recent degeneracy. You will find little, if any, genuinely original thought on this blog; I’m neither smart, creative, or well-read enough to pull that off. Like, perhaps, many of you, I’m a pretty simple country boy who is looking to do his ancestors justice and work for a better world for his descendants. Probably some mistakes, and hopefully some progress, will be made.

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One thought on “A Word on Historiography

  1. Pingback: This Week in Reaction (2015/04/17) | The Reactivity Place

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