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Thread: Play "dictionary" for a minute

  1. #1
    Go Reds Go! UKFlounder's Avatar
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    Play "dictionary" for a minute

    How do you define the term "southern" or "southerner" (or both?)

    What is your "dictionary definition" of that description? I'm just curious to see what people think this term (or terms) mean(s).

    Thanks

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  3. #2
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    People who live in the states below the Ohio River divider.

  4. #3
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    People who live in the states below the Ohio River divider.
    I agree. I think the term southerner in this country is defined by Civil War battle lines. I do not consider residents of southern California to be southerners

  5. #4
    First Time Caller SunDeck's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Missouri is the trickiest one for me to figure out, just as it was during the Civil War, I suppose. In terms of culture, I think the Ohio River dividing line, or using former confederate states works pretty well. There are subtle differences I've noticed even between Ohio and N. Ky, but only after having lived in the Carolinas. But then there are those who also assert that Cincinnati is either the South's most northern city, or as the North's most southern city. Neither is geographically accurate, but you get the point.

    Accents are certainly interesting, though. For instance, there is significant blurring of accents in southern Ohio (Appalachia) and Indiana. I must say, the southern Indiana accent is unfortunately rough and makes a person sound like a hick (y'uns, anyone?), unlike the deep southern draw of, say, a North Carolinian or Virginian. This may have something to do with the Civil War, actually; I've found both educated and uneducated people who retain their southern accents in the former confederacy, but practically no one I've met from central to southern Indiana who has been to college has failed to drop their accent. Perhaps it's due to people wanting to remain identifiable as a "Southerner". This probably doesn't help the discussion, but it's just something that has always fascinated me.
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  6. #5
    Go Reds Go! UKFlounder's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    I think Appalachian and Southern are different, though I don't know if I can explain why.

    Regarding Indiana accents, that was a noticeable one during the Civil War period, much like a southern accent is now. They did call it a "Hoosier" accent at the time.

    What I am curious about, though, is if people think "Southern" is purely based on geography or if other traits like culture, lifestyle, mindset, even heritage factor into it. Can someone live in a northern state, develop habits or lifestyles (or stereotypes) often associated with that state, then move to a southern state and suddenly be a southerner?

    I guess it's another "in the eye of the beholder" concept. For instance, according to the first reply to my query, I would be a southerner, as I live in northern Kentucky, but I have never considered myself a southerner. I've lived in Campbell County my whole life, and now within walking distance of the Ohio River, plus I have worked Cincinnati since 1997.

    Of course, I have heard both that Northern Kentucky is really part of Ohio, not of Kentucky, and that Cincinnati is really part of Kentucky, not Ohio, so there are many perceptions that exist.

  7. #6
    Oy Vey! Red in Chicago's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by UKFlounder View Post
    How do you define the term "southern" or "southerner" (or both?)

    What is your "dictionary definition" of that description? I'm just curious to see what people think this term (or terms) mean(s).

    Thanks
    Anyone south of me of course

  8. #7
    My clutch is broken RichRed's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    When I think of "The South," it's limited to NC, SC, GA, TX, AR, LA, MS, AL and FL in my mind. But if asked, I'd probably consider myself a Southerner, having lived in Virginia most of my life, even though I don't generally think of Virginia as being part of "The South."

    If that makes sense.
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  9. #8
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by UKFlounder View Post
    I think Appalachian and Southern are different, though I don't know if I can explain why.

    Regarding Indiana accents, that was a noticeable one during the Civil War period, much like a southern accent is now. They did call it a "Hoosier" accent at the time.

    What I am curious about, though, is if people think "Southern" is purely based on geography or if other traits like culture, lifestyle, mindset, even heritage factor into it. Can someone live in a northern state, develop habits or lifestyles (or stereotypes) often associated with that state, then move to a southern state and suddenly be a southerner?

    I guess it's another "in the eye of the beholder" concept. For instance, according to the first reply to my query, I would be a southerner, as I live in northern Kentucky, but I have never considered myself a southerner. I've lived in Campbell County my whole life, and now within walking distance of the Ohio River, plus I have worked Cincinnati since 1997.

    Of course, I have heard both that Northern Kentucky is really part of Ohio, not of Kentucky, and that Cincinnati is really part of Kentucky, not Ohio, so there are many perceptions that exist.
    I grew up in Detroit, lived in South Carolina for a year and then lived in Cincinnati for 6 years. all my people are from the Hudson Valley, we are in essence "Yankees"

    Cincinnati to me is more a southern city than a northern city.

    The west side of the country is different than all of them

  10. #9
    First Time Caller SunDeck's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    I lived in the South, but I'll never identify myself as a Southerner because my formative years were spent north of the Ohio River and because my entire list of ancestors is from Cincinnati. In the sense that being a "Southerner" is actually identifiable beyond geography, I believe it's probably becoming less significant than it has historically, but that it is still very possible. Things such as education, mobility, etc. may alter one's self perception relative to their surroundings, but at the same time I have not lived in Cincinnati for some time but I will always be a Cincinnatian. I have the accent, the German/Irish cultural reference points, the fear of debt, etc., which I will probably in some way impart to my children. On the other hand, my wife never actually lived in Eastern Washington, but that's where her family is from and she feels a strong identification with the homesteaders, railroad workers and trappers who preceded her parents. Is she one of them? I'd say in some way, yes. She's hard as nails, can live off the grid and hates the FBI, just like the rest of her crazy relatives.
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  11. #10
    Tired of talk. Win! Joseph's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by RichRed View Post
    When I think of "The South," it's limited to NC, SC, GA, TX, AR, LA, MS, AL and FL in my mind. But if asked, I'd probably consider myself a Southerner, having lived in Virginia most of my life, even though I don't generally think of Virginia as being part of "The South."

    If that makes sense.

    As stated, ,eye of the beholder certainly.

    I consider Texas a 'western' state instead of a Southern one. I consider Kentucky Southern overall, but arguments can be made for portions being more Northern like NKY and Louisville to name a couple. It's definitely a dividing line state. I don't particularly think of Arkansas as Southern nor do I with Missouri.

    Of course I'm an SEC guy, and as perceptions were developed as a kid I'm sure that fact played into what I carry with me as and adult.

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  12. #11
    Be the ball Roy Tucker's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Being a crossword puzzle geek where you have to carefully pay attention to subtleties, there is a world of difference between "southern" and "Southern".

    "southern" is purely a geographical term, e.g. the southern coast of Africa. "Southern" means the US South and all that that entails. I assume the discussion here is "Southern"?

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  13. #12
    Member muddie's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by RichRed View Post
    When I think of "The South," it's limited to NC, SC, GA, TX, AR, LA, MS, AL and FL in my mind. But if asked, I'd probably consider myself a Southerner, having lived in Virginia most of my life, even though I don't generally think of Virginia as being part of "The South."

    If that makes sense.
    I still consider Virginia as part of the south. Too much of Virginia's history is tied to southern allegiances to be otherwise.

    I am a lifelong North Carolinian and generally consider, as did someone earlier, the boundaries of the CSA as 'the south.' However, to question what is 'southern' is another ballgame.

  14. #13
    RaisorZone Raisor's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by RichRed View Post
    I don't generally think of Virginia as being part of "The South."

    If that makes sense.
    The Army of Northern Virginia would disagree.
    "But I do know Joey's sister indirectly (or foster sister) and I have heard stories of Joey being into shopping, designer wear, fancy coffees, and pedicures."

  15. #14
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    Cincinnati to me is more a southern city than a northern city.
    I agree with you but folks "in the south" will not. When I was a student at the U of Tenn-Knoxville they made it very clear that I was a yankee because I lived north of the Mason-Dixon line

  16. #15
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: Play "dictionary" for a minute

    Quote Originally Posted by Raisor View Post
    The Army of Northern Virginia would disagree.
    Ever been to Richmond?

    http://www.monumenthouse.com/Richmond/monument


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