“All the South’s cultural strands have continuity with whatever came before, and all of them have changed to meet new conditions. That’s how we can recognize something called the South from one generation to another.”
Culture is a creative process, but that’s not always how we think about it. We tend to see culture as given and fixed, traditional and ancestral. “That’s what Momma told me,” we say, as if Momma could never be updated. “That’s not our culture,” we continue, as if cultures never change and the people in them never disagree. “It’s always been like that,” we insist, and so on and so on.