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by C. Vann Woodward
Southern Cultures, Vol. 4, No. 4: The South in the World

"The preeminent historian of the South recalls the ironies of teaching southern history in Japan."

Early in 1953, while I was at Johns Hopkins, I received an invitation from the University of Tokyo to teach a class on the South during Reconstruction in the following summer term. I replied that I would like to accept their invitation, but added that in view of their students’ probable lack of background, I thought it better to make my course treat the South in the nineteenth century. Their reply was extremely polite but quite firm in asking that my subject be confined to the South during Reconstruction. With some puzzlement I agreed.