Black Flag under a Grey Sky. Forms of Protest in Current Neo-Confederate Prose and Song


Abstract: While ‘tragic’ protest and protest songs are normally conceived of as originating on the political left of American culture, in recent years protest from the political right, specifically the racist right has flown under the cultural radar of most researchers of American studies. This article strives to explore the ways in which the neo-Confederate movement is currently protesting the state of cultural, political, and social affairs in the contemporary American South. The neo-Confederate movement is one of the oldest forms of ‘conservative’ protest present in the United States, originating out of the defeat of the Confederacy and the civic religion of the ‘Lost Cause’ of the last decades of the 1800s into the first three decades of the 1900s. Since the neo-Confederate movement is both revolutionary and conservative, it is possible to derive some valuable insights into the contemporary reactionary politics of the right by examining a brief sampling of the protest songs, novels and essays of this particular subculture.


neo-Confederate; radical fiction; racist revolutionary subculture; U.S. cultural history

Axton, Hoyt. “Good Ol’ Rebel,” 1991. Accessed October 15, 2017. Originally written by Capt. A. S. Randolph (C. S. A.), 1866.

Faulkner, William. Intruder in the Dust. New York: Signet Press, 1960.Originally published in 1949.

Goldfield, David. Still Fighting the Civil War: The South and Civil War History. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2002.

Kay, Gregory. The Third Revolution. North Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Publishing, 2004.

Kimmel, Michael. Angry White Men: Manhood in Contemporary America. New York: Free Press, 2013.

Kimmel, Michael. Manhood in America: A Cultural History. New York: Free Press, 1996.

Lennard, Lloyd. The Last Confederate Flag. Baltimore, MD: AmErica House Publishers, 2000.

Rebel Son. “Southern Wind”. From the album Unreconstructed. Raleigh, North Carolina: Rebel Son, 2005.

Redneck 28. “Outlaws.” From the album The South Will Rise Again. Milwaukee, WI: Resistance Records, 2015.

Smith, R. E., Editor. So Good A Cause: A Decade of Southern Partisan. Columbia, South Carolina: The Foundation for Education, 1993.

Published : 2020-08-16

StarnesJ. (2020). Black Flag under a Grey Sky. Forms of Protest in Current Neo-Confederate Prose and Song. Review of International American Studies, 13(1), 159-181.

John Eric Starnes
University of Silesia  Poland

Eric Starnes is a native of North Carolina with a B.S. and an M. A. in history, as well as a PhD in American Literature. His main fields of research revolve around the study of nationalism, revolutionary fiction (fiction that advocates revolution), revolutionary subcultures, psychology - particularly the study of historical trauma, and Jungian social psychology, and the Men's Rights Movement. 

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