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-   -   Will Virginia lose it's southern status? (https://skyscraperpage.com/forum/showthread.php?t=245214)

Dariusb Dec 23, 2020 5:05 PM

Will Virginia lose it's southern status?
 
I know that many years ago Maryland and Deleware were considered southern states and now of course they're not. With the growth and changes going on in Virginia not just economically but also politically, is it destined to follow suit and no longer be considered a southern state?

bossabreezes Dec 23, 2020 5:24 PM

I already don't consider Virginia to be fully southern. There is nothing Southern about Northern Virginia, nor Virginia Beach.

The rural parts of the state probably are still ''southern'' feeling, however, rural parts of New Jersey have a ''Southern'' feel to them but nobody considers New Jersey to be Southern.

I think within a decade or two Virginia will be solidly Mid-Atlantic, joining Maryland, DC and Delaware.

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 5:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dariusb (Post 9141084)
I know that many years ago Maryland and Deleware were considered southern states and now of course they're not. With the growth and changes going on in Virginia not just economically but also politically, is it destined to follow suit and no longer be considered a southern state?

Considering that Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy, no.

But then again, despite the fact that the first structure in what became the city of Miami was a sugar cane plantation, complete with slaves, and despite the fact that Florida fought for the Confederacy, and observes Confederate Memorial Day... People will vociferously fight the notion that Miami, or Florida, are Southern. Then again, they do the same with Atlanta, or any Southern city that boasts any diversity beyond the Black and white dynamic.

I think, actually that might be the better determinant of whether a place is Southern. Does it resemble an old episode of In the Heat of the Night? If so, it is Southern. However, if you can reliably obtain a good bowl of tom yum, a decent sushi roll, or if there is an Indian grocery store in the vicinity where one can purchase butter made from water buffalo milk, then it is not Southern.

In case it wasn't clear, I think the whole argument is silly. Is the place in question physically located south of the Mason-Dixon line? Was it a part of the Confederacy? If so, hooray -- it's Southern, no matter the modern demographics. It's akin to arguing up one side and down the other that some crummy suburb of Boston cannot possibly be in New England because it doesn't look like a Currier and Ives print.

bossabreezes Dec 23, 2020 5:57 PM

Even sillier is to think that places are static and can never change based off of their history from hundreds of years ago. You know, cause Constantinople is still a devoutly catholic city to this day..

If you ask any Miami native, they will tell you Miami is not a Southern city. Likely the same will happen if you ask someone the same question in Alexandria, VA.

Richmond is another story, but that could change soon as the demography of Virginia changes.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 6:03 PM

i mean, i view it as a border state with unambiguously southern sections with mid-atlantic metropolis overspill + appalachia. i havent been to richmond but i imagine that its trending the same way as metro dc, just further back on the curve.

an archetype not unlike say missouri, where you can find a mid-atlantic derived midwestern city, a mid-plains city, rural ag midlands, actual dixie where they grow rice and cotton, rural african american majority towns, ozarks...missouri not being as dynamic obviously vis-a-vis demographic shift like va.

its an established archetype even though its messy and doesnt fit in a neat box like an iowa or massachusetts.

Manitopiaaa Dec 23, 2020 6:04 PM

It's already not majority Southern. Here's my map of Virginia's regions:

https://i.imgur.com/i6PJAjW.png

Northern Virginia (yellow) is 3,161,137 people (37% of the Commonwealth) and distinctly not Southern. I'm an Alexandrian and other than legacy historical markers, I would have never considered my city anything but Northern. The culture is certainly an extension of Northeast culture. And demographic inflows keep chipping away at whatever residual Southern culture remains. Places like Fauquier, Stafford, Spotsylvania, Culpeper, Orange, and King George still have a majority Southern culture, but there's a rapid influx of liberals wanting a more rural/exurban bucolic lifestyle. They are falling into Nova's sphere of influence.

Which is why some of the biggest trends against Trump came from this belt of "used-to-be-ruby-red" counties:
https://i.imgur.com/a3gjMfQ.png

Hampton Roads (red in the first map above) is 1,638,685 people and used to be Southern until WWII, when the influx of military transplants and Northeasterners upended the culture. It's now a blend of the two (Black culture is mostly Southern, but changing, but all others are not), but feels distinctly different from even 100 miles into North Carolina.

Tidewater (orange, the Northern Neck, Middle Peninsula and Eastern Shore) is an extension of the Chesapeake Bay and feels more like parts of New England than the Old South (it's a rural, maritime culture, without pervasive evangelicalism).

Those 3 regions alone are 5,015,490 people, and don't feel very Southern to me outside of small areas.

Southside (purple) is still 100% Southern, but only has 530,350 people. If you consider Appalachian culture to be "Southern" (I don't) then you can add Appalachia (blue, 567,700 people) and maybe Shenandoah Valley (green, 641,252 people) to the mix as Southern (it's peripheral Appalachia).

Personally, Shenandoah Valley to me feels like Pennsylvania more than South Carolina, given it's a mix of small liberal college towns (Harrisonburg, Lexington), increasingly progressive retirement communities (Staunton), environmentalist and outdoor enthusiasts (Roanoke and the Triple Crown area), conservative farmlands (most of the region's area), wealthy business-friendly suburbs (Salem), Dixie supporters (intermixed throughout), winery-owning yuppies (near Shenandoah National Park). It's still a Conservative region on the whole, but far less than what you'd find in the South.

Most of the rural South is closer to 80-20% Republican, whereas Shenandoah Valley is more 60-40% Republican. Our liberal Senator, Tim Kaine, won 42% there in 2018. And the region trended strongly Joe Biden last month, closer to what you saw in Eastern Pennsylvania rather than rural North Carolina. So I'd caution people who automatically think rural = Southern.

Piedmont (pink) with 1,658,712 people, is a grab-bag. Unlike Nova and Hampton Roads (which are more non-Southern with pockets of South), Piedmont is the opposite (more Southern with pockets of non-South). Almost all of the rural areas here feel Southern, especially those around the Lynchburg/Appomattox Area. The rural counties in between Charlottesville and Richmond are also Southern in feel. Charlottesville, however, does not feel Southern at all, other than history. It feels like a town you could find in Vermont. Closer to Burlington, VT than Burlington, NC.

Richmond is another area of muddled cultures. The Black population still feels distinctly Southern, but transplants to the area do not. Places like Chesterfield and Henrico feel like the Fall Line, with people who seem Southern and others who could have just moved from New York. The shifting politics of this area (Biden flipped Chesterfield County, the first Dem win since 1948!) is another indication of "Northern creep."

All in all, the majority of Virginians orient Northeastern now, so I consider it a Northeast state, albeit one where certain regions are still distinctly and strongly Southern. I think last month's election provides a good "line of division." If you look at the north half of the state, it trended almost uniformly in Biden's favor. That gigantic chunk (where most Virginians live) is what I'd call the 'emerging Northeast bastion.' Suburban Nova is already firmly Northeast, but now that creep is rapidly enveloping exurban Nova, northern Shenandoah Valley, and most of Piedmont's population centers.

I think in 10 years, Virginia will be bluer than Connecticut, and the cultural dominance of Northeast culture will reach critical mass in Richmond. The state government is making major investments to connect Richmond to the Northeast Corridor, and even spent $4 billion last year buying the right-of-way for the entire track that connects Richmond to Washington.

It's not a question of whether Virginia is still majority Southern (it's already not). It's a question of when Northeast culture spreads enough to take a commanding majority of the State's population centers. After last month's election, I think it'll happen sooner than most think.

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bossabreezes (Post 9141146)
Even sillier is to think that places are static and can never change based off of their history from hundreds of years ago. You know, cause Constantinople is still a devoutly catholic city to this day..

If you ask any Miami native, they will tell you Miami is not a Southern city. Likely the same will happen if you ask someone the same question in Alexandria, VA.

Richmond is another story, but that could change soon as the demography of Virginia changes.

Demography can change all it wants, but geography cannot and will not. Geography and history dictate where a place is. How it feels is irrelevant. Going by how a place feels, we can therefore declare that Huntsville is not in Alabama because of the presence of NASA, and that the Research Triangle Park is not in North Carolina because Andy and Opie never stroll through en route to the fishing pond.

bossabreezes Dec 23, 2020 6:11 PM

^^By your argument, Delaware is 100% southern. Baltimore, Washington DC, and Wilmington are all Dixie Southern cities.

Is Texas Southern? Is Oklahoma Southern? Is New Albany, IN Southern? How about Cairo, IL?

If your formulation of ''Southern'' is strictly based off of Geography, then sure. But that means that New Albany, IN is not Southern, despite being feet from Louisville KY due to it's geographical location.

galleyfox Dec 23, 2020 6:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141116)
Considering that Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy, no.

In case it wasn't clear, I think the whole argument is silly. Is the place in question physically located south of the Mason-Dixon line? Was it a part of the Confederacy? If so, hooray -- it's Southern, no matter the modern demographics. It's akin to arguing up one side and down the other that some crummy suburb of Boston cannot possibly be in New England because it doesn't look like a Currier and Ives print.

Many people think that Southern means ‘Looks and votes like Alabama’ so Virginia can’t possibly be Southern anymore. But Illinois certainly doesn’t vote at all like Indiana despite being right next door. It doesn’t mean they’re not both Midwestern.

Being Southern is about how slavery and the Civil War forever changed the trajectory and culture of the region versus other parts of the United States. We don’t talk of a ‘rust belt’ in the South because hard industry in the 19th century preferred to invest capital in places that weren’t at risk of Secession or the political instability of Reconstruction. And without hard industry, the South doesn’t experience the Great Migration and Northern-style urban segregation to the same degree.

In the modern era, the South benefits from the lack of this industrial history with sprawling growth. Though the South has an ongoing rural to suburban migration that sets it apart from the West.

By that metric, Virginia is quite Southern indeed.

Manitopiaaa Dec 23, 2020 6:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141158)
Demography can change all it wants, but geography cannot and will not. Geography and history dictate where a place is. How it feels is irrelevant. Going by how a place feels, we can therefore declare that Huntsville is not in Alabama because of the presence of NASA, and that the Research Triangle Park is not in North Carolina because Andy and Opie never stroll through en route to the fishing pond.

By geography, Virginia is already in the northern half of the East Coast.

As for history, the State has been actively purging its dark past. This past Monday, they even removed the Robert E. Lee Statue from the U.S. Capitol's Statuary Hall (it has been there for 111 years): https://apnews.com/article/race-and-...1d9a4295b19fcd

It will be replaced by Barbara Johns, the Black woman whose actions led to the Supreme Court outlawing segregation in Brown v. Board of Education.

My city is renaming any highway, school, or park with Confederate ties. This past June, they removed "Appomattox", the Old Town statue to celebrate Confederate soldiers: https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/02/us/co...rnd/index.html

So if a State is actively rewriting its historical narrative, is history also static?

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bossabreezes (Post 9141161)
^^By your argument, Delaware is 100% southern. Baltimore, Washington DC, and Wilmington are all Dixie Southern cities.

Were they part of the Confederacy?

Quote:

Is Texas Southern? Is Oklahoma Southern? Is New Albany, IN Southern?
Did Texas fight for the Confederacy? Did Oklahoma? As for Indiana, I know that lynching Blacks certainly was all the rage there, but were they part of the Confederacy?

Look, I know that the thought of being associated with the South in any way whatsoever makes any self-respecting Floridian's balls itch -- unless that Floridian is one of the old guard in the central part of the state or descended from one of those old Everglades clans where were there before Ms. Tuttle ever flounced on down. In which case they hate Black and brown people just as efficiently as any Georgia cracker ever could. However, history and geography are where it's at. Florida is... where, and in the Civil War Florida fought for... whom? There's little escape in more modern history either as when it comes to elections, Florida's voting patterns have been as repellent as Mississippi's. The only difference is your lunatic conservatives have an equal chance of having a Spanish surname.

If it makes you feel better, I assure you that the smart set in Atlanta, Charlotte, et cetera, as with Miami, just cannot compute the thought that a place might be Southern and have their signage in Mandarin at the same time! However, as I said, I think the whole argument is just silly. History + geography = Southern (or not).

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Manitopiaaa (Post 9141168)
By geography, Virginia is already in the northern half of the East Coast.

As for history, the State has been actively purging its dark past. This past Monday, they even removed the Robert E. Lee Statue from the U.S. Capitol's Statuary Hall (it has been there for 111 years): https://apnews.com/article/race-and-...1d9a4295b19fcd

It will be replaced by Barbara Johns, the Black woman whose actions led to the Supreme Court outlawing segregation in Brown v. Board of Education.

My city is renaming any highway, school, or park with Confederate ties. This past June, they removed "Appomattox", the Old Town statue to celebrate Confederate soldiers: https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/02/us/co...rnd/index.html

So if a State is actively rewriting its historical narrative, is history also static?

It's not purging its dark past because that's not physically possible, nor is it rewriting its historical narrative. What's going on here, and what should be going on everywhere, is acknowledging that dark past, and expanding the historical narrative to understand and accept that however hunky-dory things have been for rich white straight men, they pretty much sucked for everyone else, and often still do. It is not a purge, nor a rewrite to basically open one's eyes. I'm happy Virginia is doing so, but that does not change its history or its location.

Manitopiaaa Dec 23, 2020 6:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141116)
Considering that Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy, no.

In case it wasn't clear, I think the whole argument is silly. Is the place in question physically located south of the Mason-Dixon line? Was it a part of the Confederacy? If so, hooray -- it's Southern, no matter the modern demographics. It's akin to arguing up one side and down the other that some crummy suburb of Boston cannot possibly be in New England because it doesn't look like a Currier and Ives print.

By your argument, Spain is forever Muslim because it was controlled by Al Andalus from 711 to 1492. It will forever be part of the Muslim caliphate because cultural lines are static.

Vladivostok is a Chinese city, Algiers is French, and Taipei is Japanese.

The only constant about history and culture is change.

bossabreezes Dec 23, 2020 6:33 PM

According to Hauntedhead, history (but only history of Slavery), Geography and hating black people is what the South is defined by. History from after slavery moving forward should be thrown out, for whatever reason.

Good to know!

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141170)
In which case they hate Black and brown people just as efficiently as any Georgia cracker ever could.


hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Manitopiaaa (Post 9141176)
By your argument, Spain is forever Muslim because it was controlled by Al Andalus from 711 to 1492. It will forever be part of the Muslim caliphate because cultural lines are static.

Vladivostok is a Chinese city, Algiers is French, and Taipei is Japanese.

The only constant about history and culture is change.

And all that cultural and historical change churn to make a modern place, but they do not ever physically remove that place from where it physically, geographically is.

You can say all you want that someplace in Virginia does not feel Southern because it does not conform to the -- typically negative -- stereotype that defines what does and does not feel Southern to the average American. You can note that there certainly are a lot of smart people who appear to have all of their teeth walking around downtown Richmond, for example, and conclude therefore that Richmond does not feel Southern. However, unless downtown Richmond has been dismantled brick by brick, transported to upstate New York and reassembled there in a disused part of Buffalo, it's still Southern.

It's amusing though that people spend all this time and effort to convince themselves they aren't where they are. No other region of the country has that same Oh, icky-poo!! factor. :haha:

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bossabreezes (Post 9141185)
According to Hauntedhead, history (but only history of Slavery), Geography and hating black people is what the South is defined by. Good to know!

The quality of being Southern is almost universally defined by negative stereotypes. If that weren't the case you either wouldn't care if Miami is considered a part of the South, or at the very least you wouldn't work so hard to convince yourself and others that it isn't.

iheartthed Dec 23, 2020 6:35 PM

I think the real question is what will "southern" mean in the future. We tend to think of places in the south as not being "southern" as they urbanize, so does the southern identity just get discarded?

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iheartthed (Post 9141189)
I think the real question is what will "southern" mean in the future. We tend to think of places in the south as not being "southern" as they urbanize, so does the southern identity just get discarded?

The actual, modern Southern identity is that of the most diverse region in the country, where you tend to find the most integrated cities. Southerners know that already, but the rest of the country resists it.

bossabreezes Dec 23, 2020 6:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141188)
The quality of being Southern is almost universally defined by negative stereotypes. If that weren't the case you either wouldn't care if Miami is considered a part of the South, or at the very least you wouldn't work so hard to convince yourself and others that it isn't.

Maybe being Southern is a negative to you, but please do not define what is positive or negative for me.

I don't associate Southern culture with only negative things. I associate it with many things, including:

-History of Slavery
-Very warm, welcoming, friendly people
-Amazing Food
-Specific Architecture
-Accent

So, if you are a self-loathing Southerner, that's 100% your right and prerogative. But your definitions, however skewed they might be, do not paint the picture of a whole ethnographic group. Pretty ridiculous and discriminatory.

brickell Dec 23, 2020 6:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141116)
But then again, despite the fact that the first structure in what became the city of Miami was a sugar cane plantation, complete with slaves, and despite the fact that Florida fought for the Confederacy, and observes Confederate Memorial Day... People will vociferously fight the notion that Miami, or Florida, are Southern. Then again, they do the same with Atlanta, or any Southern city that boasts any diversity beyond the Black and white dynamic.


Leaving the rest of Florida out of it (definitely Southern), Miami is an interesting case. It's a border city, an edge city, and a port city. It was destined to always be different. While you won't find many southerners (except in the AA population) living here anymore it's bones are decidedly so. Segregation and racism are built into the streets and neighborhoods, the schools and institutions, the highways, the sprawl. Will still be many decades if ever to erase all that.

In the same vane, Virginia can no more quickly erase the vestiges of it's past, it's roots, it's bones, regardless of who currently occupies the real estate.

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 6:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bossabreezes (Post 9141193)
Maybe being Southern is a negative to you, but please do not define what is positive or negative for me.

I don't associate Southern culture with only negative things. I associate it with many things, including:

-History of Slavery
-Very warm, welcoming, friendly people
-Amazing Food
-Specific Architecture
-Accent

So, if you are a self-loathing Southerner, that's 100% your right and prerogative. But your definitions, however skewed they might be, do not paint the picture of a whole ethnographic group. Pretty ridiculous and discriminatory.

I see. You're just very passionate about Ms. Tuttle's timing and her status as an Ohioan, both of which are aspects of Miami's settlement that are vital to know and which must be respected.

Well, okay then.

Manitopiaaa Dec 23, 2020 6:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by iheartthed (Post 9141189)
I think the real question is what will "southern" mean in the future. We tend to think of places in the south as not being "southern" as they urbanize, so does the southern identity just get discarded?

Depends on who's coming in and what direction culture is diffusing (are the new transplants changing the place culturally, or assimilating to it?). Atlanta and Nashville are both rapidly-growing urban centers that still have a very strong Southern cultural imprint. I would guess Atlanta at 10 million will still feel strongly Southern.

In Houston, the new neighbors are disproportionately Latinos and Western liberal Whites. As it urbanizes, Houston will become less and less culturally Southern. I already don't think of Austin or Dallas as Southern, and I never thought of San Antonio as Southern regardless of what happened 159 years ago.

iheartthed Dec 23, 2020 6:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Manitopiaaa (Post 9141203)
Depends on who's coming in and what direction culture is diffusing (are the new transplants changing the place culturally, or assimilating to it?). Atlanta and Nashville are both rapidly-growing urban centers that still have a very strong Southern cultural imprint. I would guess Atlanta at 10 million will still feel strongly Southern.

In Houston, the new neighbors are disproportionately Latinos and Western liberal Whites. As it urbanizes, Houston will become less and less culturally Southern. I already don't think of Austin or Dallas as Southern, and I never thought of San Antonio as Southern regardless of what happened 159 years ago.

I don't know Houston or Nashville, but Atlanta (metro) feels about as southern to me as Dallas feels Texan. Maybe even less southern in Atlanta. Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham seem even less southern than either Atlanta or Dallas.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 6:55 PM

watch some of the midwestern Kitchen Nightmares and get back to me on what people associate with the south. it’s just inconceivable to me that any restaurant in the south could approach this level of absolute culinary soul destruction. just like someone with a serotonin crash aching for sweet sweet death serving half frozen processed chicken cubes from the freezer floor on stale nacho chips.

https://d13ezvd6yrslxm.cloudfront.ne..._Inferno32.jpg

Dariusb Dec 23, 2020 6:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Manitopiaaa (Post 9141154)
It's already not majority Southern. Here's my map of Virginia's regions:

https://i.imgur.com/i6PJAjW.png

Northern Virginia (yellow) is 3,161,137 people (37% of the Commonwealth) and distinctly not Southern. I'm an Alexandrian and other than legacy historical markers, I would have never considered my city anything but Northern. The culture is certainly an extension of Northeast culture. And demographic inflows keep chipping away at whatever residual Southern culture remains. Places like Fauquier, Stafford, Spotsylvania, Culpeper, Orange, and King George still have a majority Southern culture, but there's a rapid influx of liberals wanting a more rural/exurban bucolic lifestyle. They are falling into Nova's sphere of influence.

Which is why some of the biggest trends against Trump came from this belt of "used-to-be-ruby-red" counties:
https://i.imgur.com/a3gjMfQ.png

Hampton Roads (red in the first map above) is 1,638,685 people and used to be Southern until WWII, when the influx of military transplants and Northeasterners upended the culture. It's now a blend of the two (Black culture is mostly Southern, but changing, but all others are not), but feels distinctly different from even 100 miles into North Carolina.

Tidewater (orange, the Northern Neck, Middle Peninsula and Eastern Shore) is an extension of the Chesapeake Bay and feels more like parts of New England than the Old South (it's a rural, maritime culture, without pervasive evangelicalism).

Those 3 regions alone are 5,015,490 people, and don't feel very Southern to me outside of small areas.

Southside (purple) is still 100% Southern, but only has 530,350 people. If you consider Appalachian culture to be "Southern" (I don't) then you can add Appalachia (blue, 567,700 people) and maybe Shenandoah Valley (green, 641,252 people) to the mix as Southern (it's peripheral Appalachia).

Personally, Shenandoah Valley to me feels like Pennsylvania more than South Carolina, given it's a mix of small liberal college towns (Harrisonburg, Lexington), increasingly progressive retirement communities (Staunton), environmentalist and outdoor enthusiasts (Roanoke and the Triple Crown area), conservative farmlands (most of the region's area), wealthy business-friendly suburbs (Salem), Dixie supporters (intermixed throughout), winery-owning yuppies (near Shenandoah National Park). It's still a Conservative region on the whole, but far less than what you'd find in the South.

Most of the rural South is closer to 80-20% Republican, whereas Shenandoah Valley is more 60-40% Republican. Our liberal Senator, Tim Kaine, won 42% there in 2018. And the region trended strongly Joe Biden last month, closer to what you saw in Eastern Pennsylvania rather than rural North Carolina. So I'd caution people who automatically think rural = Southern.

Piedmont (pink) with 1,658,712 people, is a grab-bag. Unlike Nova and Hampton Roads (which are more non-Southern with pockets of South), Piedmont is the opposite (more Southern with pockets of non-South). Almost all of the rural areas here feel Southern, especially those around the Lynchburg/Appomattox Area. The rural counties in between Charlottesville and Richmond are also Southern in feel. Charlottesville, however, does not feel Southern at all, other than history. It feels like a town you could find in Vermont. Closer to Burlington, VT than Burlington, NC.

Richmond is another area of muddled cultures. The Black population still feels distinctly Southern, but transplants to the area do not. Places like Chesterfield and Henrico feel like the Fall Line, with people who seem Southern and others who could have just moved from New York. The shifting politics of this area (Biden flipped Chesterfield County, the first Dem win since 1948!) is another indication of "Northern creep."

All in all, the majority of Virginians orient Northeastern now, so I consider it a Northeast state, albeit one where certain regions are still distinctly and strongly Southern. I think last month's election provides a good "line of division." If you look at the north half of the state, it trended almost uniformly in Biden's favor. That gigantic chunk (where most Virginians live) is what I'd call the 'emerging Northeast bastion.' Suburban Nova is already firmly Northeast, but now that creep is rapidly enveloping exurban Nova, northern Shenandoah Valley, and most of Piedmont's population centers.

I think in 10 years, Virginia will be bluer than Connecticut, and the cultural dominance of Northeast culture will reach critical mass in Richmond. The state government is making major investments to connect Richmond to the Northeast Corridor, and even spent $4 billion last year buying the right-of-way for the entire track that connects Richmond to Washington.

It's not a question of whether Virginia is still majority Southern (it's already not). It's a question of when Northeast culture spreads enough to take a commanding majority of the State's population centers. After last month's election, I think it'll happen sooner than most think.

Very interesting read. Thanks for taking the time to put this together and everyone for contributing.

202_Cyclist Dec 23, 2020 7:00 PM

The line has shifted a bit farther south in recent years but no need to continue this debate, this settles it.

https://bigthink.com/strange-maps/31...th-litmus-test

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 7:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist (Post 9141226)
The line has shifted a farther south in recent years but no need to continue this debate, this settles it.

https://bigthink.com/strange-maps/31...th-litmus-test

ha, nice. i use the same line of evidence (among others)
when trying to figure out if i’m in the south or southern plains west of the mississippi.

KB0679 Dec 23, 2020 7:04 PM

Y'all know the Civil War and the Civil Rights era weren't all that long ago...like, at all. There's still a guy alive today who's the son of a formerly enslaved Virginian.

So yeah, if you took up arms against the Union, you're still very much Southern in my book. We aren't far enough removed from that era for it to not be relevant. Hell, we're still trying to get rid of Confederate statuary all throughout the South.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 7:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KB0679 (Post 9141234)
Y'all know the Civil War and the Civil Rights era weren't all that long ago...like, at all. There's still a guy alive today who's the son of a formerly enslaved Virginian.

So yeah, if you took up arms against the Union, you're still very much Southern in my book. We aren't far enough removed from that era for it to not be relevant. Hell, we're still trying to get rid of Confederate statuary all throughout the South.

i mean, we just pulled down confederate statues in st. louis. am i a southerner? i’ve never taken up arms against the union.

this is a messy proposition.

Manitopiaaa Dec 23, 2020 7:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 202_Cyclist (Post 9141226)
The line has shifted a bit farther south in recent years but no need to continue this debate, this settles it.

https://bigthink.com/strange-maps/31...th-litmus-test

And it matches up very closely with the map I posted earlier about counties that trended Biden. I think that's definitely the line of divide.

https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGc...y=80&width=697

https://i.imgur.com/a3gjMfQ.png

Quixote Dec 23, 2020 7:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dariusb (Post 9141084)
I know that many years ago Maryland and Deleware were considered southern states and now of course they're not. With the growth and changes going on in Virginia not just economically but also politically, is it destined to follow suit and no longer be considered a southern state?

Maryland and Delaware were considered "border" states (neither North nor South), and today they truly embody the "Mid-Atlantic" definition -- Delaware in particular. I think a case can be made for Delaware having always been more northern than southern.

1. Delaware never had a large enslaved population, 90% having been freed by 1860.

2. Delawareans voted to remain in the Union on January 3, 1861, the pro-Confederacy being in the minority along battlefield lines

3. About half of the state's population around the time of the Civil War was concentrated in the northernmost county (New Castle), which you would think was more culturally aligned with Philadelphia than Baltimore and South Jersey than non-peninsular Maryland.

4. Delaware was "shielded" from the rest of the southern states by the Mason-Dixon Line.

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 7:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Centropolis (Post 9141237)
i mean, we just pulled down confederate statues in st. louis. am i a southerner? i’ve never taken up arms against the union.

this is a messy proposition.

But just think... It could get even messier. I live in Greenville, which boasts an enormous international corporate presence, including Michelin and BMW. French and German are very well represented here, and as such, I hereby declare this area to no longer be Southern. Henceforth it shall be a protectorate of either Belgium or Luxembourg, depending on who has the more acceptable tax structure. Further bulletins as events warrant.

JManc Dec 23, 2020 7:58 PM

Do they still drink sweet tea, eat grits and like Toby Keith in VA? If so, still southern even if they mix in Biden and lattes ain there somewhere.

KB0679 Dec 23, 2020 7:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Centropolis (Post 9141237)
i mean, we just pulled down confederate statues in st. louis. am i a southerner? i’ve never taken up arms against the union.

this is a messy proposition.

You live in a Midwestern state that was a slave state but didn't secede, so I'm not sure what your point is.

jd3189 Dec 23, 2020 8:12 PM

I'm of the opinion that what is "Southern" has many definitions. In terms of geography and culture, Virginia is still Southern, but it's also southern Mid-Atlantic, along with North Carolina. NY, PA, NJ, Delaware, and Maryland are northern Mid-Atlantic with DC being the dividing line.

I also believe the South can add to its cultural definition beyond slavery, Confederacy, Jim Crow racism, etc. After all, there is a good amount of Spanish influence in Florida and Texas and French influence in Louisiana and much of the Gulf coast, which had greatly determined the type of cuisine made down here. You have African Americans contributing a lot to the cultural make up of the South ( which is still being seen greatly in Atlanta) and European Americans also adding and contributing in other great ways devoid of the dark history.


If the NE, which started historical as Yankeeland and the home of the WASP, was able to also be defined by Italians, Jews, African Americans, and countless other immigrant and migrant groups, why not the South?

hauntedheadnc Dec 23, 2020 8:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jd3189 (Post 9141349)
If the NE, which started historical as Yankeeland and the home of the WASP, was able to also be defined by Italians, Jews, African Americans, and countless other immigrant and migrant groups, why not the South?

It's also worth wondering why someplace like Maine, which is not diverse, gets to ride those coattails of respectability whereas anywhere in the South which is diverse and international gets booted out of the "the South" because it doesn't conform to the stereotype?

iheartthed Dec 23, 2020 9:22 PM

Southern culture is the drawl, cuisine, relative cultural conservatism (not just racism. the north has racism too), southern baptist church culture, etc. Those markers have seemingly faded in some places as the population has urbanized and diversified.

galleyfox Dec 23, 2020 9:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141357)
It's also worth wondering why someplace like Maine, which is not diverse, gets to ride those coattails of respectability whereas anywhere in the South which is diverse and international gets booted out of the "the South" because it doesn't conform to the stereotype?

You might be interested in this take on how the U.S. forms regional identities. It’s mostly focused on the Midwest (because the Midwest consciously eschews regionalism), but it has some interesting theories how the South and New England formed their identities in contrast.

https://www.jstor.org/stable/216100?seq=1

Yuri Dec 23, 2020 9:59 PM

I follow US Census definition, and to me Maryland, Delaware and Virginia is South and they grow quickly as South does.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 10:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KB0679 (Post 9141338)
You live in a Midwestern state that was a slave state but didn't secede, so I'm not sure what your point is.

me neither.

but i guess that’s my point.

Docere Dec 23, 2020 10:14 PM

Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy. History matters.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 10:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hauntedheadnc (Post 9141296)
But just think... It could get even messier. I live in Greenville, which boasts an enormous international corporate presence, including Michelin and BMW. French and German are very well represented here, and as such, I hereby declare this area to no longer be Southern. Henceforth it shall be a protectorate of either Belgium or Luxembourg, depending on who has the more acceptable tax structure. Further bulletins as events warrant.

ah, no more asheville? i miss visiting. i used to flip a coin at noon on fridays for asheville or new orleans back when i could do those things. about the same distance/time from st. louis and appreciated the social complexities of both...used to like to push the boundaries of the weekend.

i’ve heard greenville is cool, i’ve certainly driven through but not stopped.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 10:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Docere (Post 9141515)
Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy. History matters.

history matters but history dies like we all do. not to be glib, i have a history degree so i appreciate the recording of human endeavors.

but everything goes for better and for worse - us all surrounded by the ghosts of this continent.

mrnyc Dec 23, 2020 10:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Docere (Post 9141515)
Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy. History matters.

in that case there is no such thing as the south. :shrug:

Manitopiaaa Dec 23, 2020 11:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Docere (Post 9141515)
Richmond was the capital of the Confederacy. History matters.

And Constantinople was once the capital of the Roman Empire. So I guess Istanbul's Italian now.

bossabreezes Dec 23, 2020 11:29 PM

New York, erm, New Amsterdam was a Dutch outpost so clearly NYC is Dutch in culture and this can never change, history matters.

MonkeyRonin Dec 23, 2020 11:31 PM

The gist of it seems to be that a place can be culturally Southern, historically Southern, and/or geographically Southern. The latter two are of course fixed, but culture is more fluid.

Virginia will always be part of the historic South, while Geographically it's more mid-Atlanic than Southern, strictly speaking. Culturally though, it seems to be more aligned with Northern states now.

Personally, I see it more as being part of the "New South" along with Georgia and North Carolina rather than being "not the South". That, or maybe more accurately its just become an extension of the North with most of the population living in the DC suburbs.

Centropolis Dec 23, 2020 11:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin (Post 9141618)
The gist of it seems to be that a place can be culturally Southern, historically Southern, and/or geographically Southern. The latter two are of course fixed, but culture is more fluid.

Virginia will always be part of the historic South, while Geographically it's more mid-Atlanic than Southern, strictly speaking. Culturally though, it seems to be more aligned with Northern states now.

Personally, I see it more as being part of the "New South" along with Georgia and North Carolina. That or its just become an extension of the North with most of the population living in the DC suburbs.

10,000 ft view is i see it as supercharged bos-wash encroachment with some new south dynamics but mostly the former.

Yuri Dec 23, 2020 11:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin (Post 9141618)
The gist of it seems to be that a place can be culturally Southern, historically Southern, and/or geographically Southern. The latter two are of course fixed, but culture is more fluid.

Virginia will always be part of the historic South, while Geographically it's more mid-Atlanic than Southern, strictly speaking. Culturally though, it seems to be more aligned with Northern states now.

Personally, I see it more as being part of the "New South" along with Georgia and North Carolina rather than being "not the South". That, or maybe more accurately its just become an extension of the North with most of the population living in the DC suburbs.

That's my point. Aside being the "heart of south", Virginia population and economic patterns is much more similar to the booming North Carolina and Georgia than with the stagnant Pennsylvania, New York or Massachusetts.

ardecila Dec 23, 2020 11:58 PM

Worth noting that Virginia was the largest of the 13 colonies, by far. So at the start of the country, it was the 900-lb gorilla that was able to shift the terms of debate and warp the rest of the states around its needs - sorta like California is today.


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