CFP: The American South


The American South

Organized by Derek Alderman and Rebecca Dobbs

With the annual meeting located in Tampa, Florida, this year, the nation of geographers has an unparalleled opportunity to engage with the US region that is the American South. A region with both painful legacies and vibrant social justice movements, with both distinct sub-regional cultures and a broad overall flavor, with many geographic patterns simultaneously both similar to and different from those in the US as a whole, the American South is deserving of scholarly attention from a wide range of perspectives. The study of the American South has long been of importance to geographers. Yet, the region has received increased attention as of late, leading to the founding of an AAG specialtygroup on the South and the expansion of the Southeastern Geographer to a quarterly journal. Underlying this renaissance and remaking of Southern Studies is a critical engagement with current theoretical and methodological debates and changes in geography, a valuing of the environmental as well as the cultural and political dimensions of the region, and a consideration of previously marginalized voices and perspectives within traditional conceptions of southern identity.

We welcome paper, session, field trip, and workshop proposals that (a) demonstrate scholarship on the social, political, cultural, economic, environmental/physical geographic, and ecological aspects of the American South; (b) engage in critical reflection on the issues, processes, intrinsic qualities, and interconnections that shape the region and its landscapes; (c) utilize innovative techniques and methods in exploring aspects of the US Southeast; (d) provide venues for the exchange of research and teaching ideas among scholars of the American South; or (e) build greater ties between geographers and the larger, cross-disciplinary Southern Studies community. Geographers from all subfields of the discipline are encouraged to participate in some aspect of this Emerging Theme; we also encourage participation from scholars outside of geography.
Sessions on a number of important topics are already being organized including:

  • Water
  • Race
  • Migration
  • American Indians
  • Tourism broadly, and also plantation tourism specifically
  • The legacy of the Civil Rights struggle

Expressions of interest in the above are welcomed. In addition, we encourage proposals or abstracts across the breadth of geographic inquiry, including but not limited to the following:

  • Mapping the South-cartographically or conceptually
  • The Changing South –the tension between tradition and transition
  • Role of food, music, and sports in (re)defining southern landscapes
  • Social class, privilege, and inequality in the South
  • Feminist perspectives of the region along with use of critical race and queer approaches The South in literature, film, television, and other media (including Internet)
  • Southern politics, political struggles, and uneven electoral geographies
  • Neo-liberalization of the American South
  • Public memory, commemoration and heritage in the South
  • Human-environment interaction, sustainability, and environmental (in)justice Southern environmental geographies and natural resource issues
  • Economic and labor geographies of present or past
  • Mobilities and movement in southern history and culture
  • Southern studies: theoretical and methodological issues and concerns
  • Urbanization, rurality, and shifting development geographies
  • Historical geographies of the South and southerners
  • Applied GIS, digital humanities, and other innovations

To participate in The American South sessions, please visit to submit your abstract or session. When you receive confirmation by email of a successful abstract submission, forward this confirmation If you are pre-organizing a session, forward the session confirmation to as well. Thank you!

Oscar Larson
Association of American Geographers


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