There is a tendency, particularly in the popular imagination, to imagine those who opposed the advances of the Civil Rights Movement as extremists, segregationists, or even 'rednecks'.  This approach does not allow for a nuanced examination of the complex historical and cultural factors that galvanised white resistance to the Civil Rights Movement, and the social and economic advancement of African-Americans more broadly. ​This paper is an analysis of the ways in which the discourse of white obstructionism, particularly as it manifested in the state of Mississippi by way of organisations such as the Ku Klux Klan and the Citizens' Councils, was intrinsically gendered, and founded in the mythological construction of the loss of the American Civil War as a "Lost Cause" . This concept glorified and romanticised the society and culture of the antebellum South, and is fundamental to understanding the formation of white Southern identity and resistance to the Civil Rights Movement.


E348 Forgan Smith Building (1)