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Archive for July, 2018

A Sociology of Texas

Texas looms large in the story that America tells about itself, and this has given rise to a subgenre where male writers from Texas (usually of European ancestry) seek to understand better, apologize for, and thoroughly explain to their readers the conditions of the author’s home state. Though Lawrence Wright’s ‘God Save Texas: A Journey into the Soul of the Lone Star State’ (Knopf, 2018) nominally falls into this subgenre, it manages to overcome the constraints that some with it, or so BRB reviewer Christopher Landrum argues. While much of the book examines how Texas’s economy, population, and political influence over the rest of the nation have expanded since about 1978, Wright is ambivalent, and more than a little impatient, with the continued “immature political culture” of Texas — a culture that, as the current occupants of the White House demonstrates, has long rubbed off on the rest of the country. All in all, the book, in spite of some glaring omissions, provides a readable and informative for Texas and non-Texas alike to gain a new perspective on the ‘lone star state’.