Department Events Calendar

Seminars and Workshops

3:30pm - 5:00pm
Host: Susan Wolcott

"The Other Great Migration: White Southern Migrants and Right-wing Politics in the U.S"

Abstract: The 20th century saw the Great Migration of millions out of the U.S. South. This paper provides a novel angle on this episode by studying the migration of 19 million white Southerners to the rest of the country. Using a shift-share design to identify causal effects, we show that white Southern migrants permanently shaped the political landscape at destination by importing their right-wing preferences and beliefs. Non-Southern areas with a higher share of Southern-born whites in 1940 were more likely to vote for Trump in 2016, as well as other right-wing presidential candidates throughout the 20th century. Their representatives were more likely to oppose politically liberal legislation, such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and object to the Electoral College count in 2021. Ideological transmission through religious institutions and the media help perpetuate these preferences. These results showcase how historical Southern institutions continue to matter for U.S. politics, even outside the South, via the transmission of white Southern ideologies.
3:30pm - 5:00pm
Online seminar. Host: Subal Kumbhakar