South By Midwest: Or, Where Is Oklahoma?


Is Oklahoma a Southern state? Where is the northwestern border of Dixie?

“Before I come to that assertion, let me ask you, dear reader, who I trust has at least a passing interest in the nation’s 46th state: Where is Oklahoma? Were someone on the street to ask you this question, you might turn to a political map of the United States and point to the meat cleaver above Texas. There it is, you would say, in the mid-south-central portion of the continental United States. But where is it culturally? Is it part of The South? The U.S. Census Bureau says so. Generations of venerable southern historians, such as C. Vann Woodward, have said so. …

Going back to Tulsa, I noticed that somewhere south of Kansas City, Standard American gave way to Southern twang, leading me to eventually pinpoint Carthage as the transition zone. A 2004 study of national speech patterns boiled American dialects down to six major groupings. Northeastern Oklahoma and southern Missouri are the northwestern limits of the southern accent, while the “midland,” that area from northern Missouri to Iowa, Nebraska and Illinois, was found to be the region with the fewest deviations from Standard American….”

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  1. ‘Standard American’. That’s an interesting term. It implies that the South isn’t ‘American’, at least not really or fully. You know, I can live with that. I prefer it in fact.

  2. I view Oklahoma as an “almost state” – it’s almost Southern Confederate, almost Texas Southwestern. Oklahoma doesn’t have any renegade open borders immigration traitors like Texans LBJ, the Bush family, Ron Paul. But, Oklahoma doesn’t have many, any Southern gents like Robert E. Lee, Washington, Thomas Jefferson.

    I think of the great Merle Haggerd song “Okie from Misgogee”. So it’s solid, poor, working class Whites…

    our target market.

  3. Oklahoma is most certainly a Southern state with a bona fide Confederate heritage. The last general and troops in the Confederate army surrendered at Fort Towson, Brig. Gen. Stand Watie and his Cherokee braves.

  4. Oklahoma ( Tulsa) is home of Oral Roberts University, Kenneth Hagin Ministries and many other Christian loosely organized under the “Word of Faith” umbrella which are very much anti-racist and fanatically pro-Israel.

  5. Sam says:
    September 3, 2013 at 9:26 pm
    Oklahoma ( Tulsa) is home of Oral Roberts University, Kenneth Hagin Ministries and many other Christian loosely organized under the “Word of Faith” umbrella which are very much anti-racist and fanatically pro-Israel.

    Jack replies:

    Oh dear. Why couldn’t the Romans have thrown these idiots to the lions?

    Bad Judeo X’tians are the worst. Responsible queer Whites infinitely better.

  6. That was a good article with lots of interesting comments. Thanks for posting, Hunter. The best comment explained that Oklahoma was so windy because Kansas blows and Texas sucks. 🙂

    As for the question, where is Oklahoma?, let’s not be mealy mouthed about this. There are only 4 meta-regions in the US, the Northeast, Midwest, South and West, so pick one and only one.

    I say that Oklahoma is clearly in the South. They kept slaves in the Indian Territory, the Cherokees fought for the Confederacy, most of the original white settlers came from elsewhere in the South, it was a Jim Crow state, it’s heavily Southern Baptist, it’s well below the Mason-Dixon line, they speak with a Southern accent, they eat Southern cuisine, the census bureau recognizes them as part of the South, etc, etc.

    Of course Oklahoma is quite different from many other parts of the South, but the South is a huge place with many distinct sub-regions. And even OK itself is divided into several distinct micro-regions. I would classify OK as part of the Appalachian-Ozarks belt, or Scots-Irish America, along with WV, KY, TN and AR. It’s the whitest part of the South and the sub-region that’s most likely to retain it’s ‘Southern-ness’ in the face of the ongoing Third World invasion of the US.

    I could see a lot of Texans eventually flooding into Oklahoma once TX reaches Peak Beaner. Shant be long now…

    Here’s an article that reveals where the ‘real’ South lies:

  7. “Why couldn’t the Romans have thrown these idiots to the lions?” They really did throw Christians to the lions, Jack. Do you mean they should have exterminated all Christians? Christianity is the solution, not the problem, Jack. These premillennial or dispensational pro-Zionists are simply heretical. There is such a thing as heresy, and also sound doctrine, Jack.

    In other news, Assad is being called “Hitler” by John Kerry and others, and Amerikans have been conditioned to respond with hate and fear to that name. Ron Paul is being attacked by SPLC for preparing to keynote a conference of racist, anti-Semites, and by Salon for calling the chemical weapons attack a false flag, which it is:

  8. I’ve always liked this Merle Haggard song:

    “We don’t smoke marijuana in Muskogee; we don’t take no trips on LSD (…) We like livin’ right, and bein’ free. I’m proud to be an Okie from Muskogee, A place where even squares can have a ball (…) And white lightnin’s still the biggest thrill of all
    We don’t make a party out of lovin’; We like holdin’ hands and pitchin’ woo;
    We don’t let our hair grow long and shaggy, Like the hippies out in San Francisco do (…) Leather boots are still in style for manly footwear; beads and Roman sandals won’t be seen. etc.”

  9. “I’ve always liked this Merle Haggard song”

    Merle’s tour bus was traveling through OK one night and all the band members were fuming some bud. Someone looked out the window and saw a road sign identifying Muskogee and said “I’ll bet they don’t smoke marijuana in Muskogee” and Merle tokk that and immediately started writing/singing the song. Merle’s parents were Okies that moved to Bakersfield, CA during the Great Depression.

  10. ‘… Assad is being called “Hitler” by John Kerry …’ There may be a Fed meme of “designated hitler.” The best hope for secession might be a programme of gradually increasing states’ rights. Perhaps we could try for a constitutional amendment that gives state governors some power to veto any U.S. foreign intervention.
    In the 2012 election, Romney won every county in three states: Utah, West Virginia, and Oklahoma. Obama won every county in 4 states: Hawaii, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
    “… Obama won the white vote only in states with small minority voting populations.” – Charles M. Blow

  11. On a cross-country trip a few years ago on I-10 to I-59 up to I-81, I noticed a very sharp demarcation, which I subsequently named the I/R boundary, where 90% of the dead animals changed from armadillos to raccoons.

    Perhaps that’s the line y’all are looking for?

  12. “‘Standard American’. That’s an interesting term. It implies that the South isn’t ‘American’, at least not really or fully. You know, I can live with that. I prefer it in fact…”

    Actually it’s simpler than that. Used to be, the proper term for that dialect of English (that which Radio Announcers, and TV personalities like Walter Cronkite used to speak) was labelled SWINE – Standard WHITE Inland Northern English.

    Well, we can’t call ANYTHING standard that’s white these days, so the term was shortened, and, in the process, offended everyone. I prefer my newscasters to be standard (heterosexual, monogamous) as well as White, when looking at the options- Oprah (not white) Eloi Anderson Cooper (not normal), etc.

    FYI, y’all.

  13. @Fr. John: Re newscasters: Just toss the damn TV in the trash. Problem solved.
    Actually, anyone who is reading this should have gone TV-less years ago. For me..thirty nine years.

  14. Oklahoma is in the south y’all.Regionally and culturally.Being a native,its kind of a touchy issue.Especially considering most people cant find it on a map.Folks from Dixie feel that only the Deep South,aka the old south is the real south.My family is from Alabama.Most of the people in the state are transplants from the Deep South.The food is the same.The accent similar.The music,the religion etc.I could go into a boring explanation about geography,mason Dixon line and confederate control of the state but what it really comes down to is I have lived in the Midwest.Its pretty vanilla.Dont get me wrong,there are some nice people and some great cities.But the culture is quite different.Ive been in Dixie as well and it was basically like home.”basically”.Oklahoma isn’t Georgia,or Alabama,but similar.Much more similar than Missouri or Iowa.To be sure,the Midwest is typically what people call states they don’t know anything about.Its like going to a class reunion and telling someone your name but they don’t remember you,then they go”oh yea,you wore blue jeans and went to class everyday”….like everybody else.Lol.Ask Oklahomans and they will tell you.Ask real Midwesterners and they will tell you Oklahoma is in the South.Dixie is elitist.Why,I don’t know.Like being stereotyped as toothless and illiterate is something to be exclusive about…idk.

  15. Oklahoma is a part of the south. Obviously not the Old South as it was not a state. Having grown up in South East Oklahoma, (Broken Bow if you need to know) and now living in Tulsa. I can assure you parts may be more southern than some, but, southern she is. Being a southerner is not just about drinking sweet tea, watching college football and going to church on Sundays, it’s a way of life. We take things a little bit more slowly and hold true to our traditions. I’m proud to be an Oklahoman and proud to be a southern woman.

  16. I need to chime in here being someone that was born, raised and lived in northeast Oklahoman all my life. I have always and will proudly always be considered a mid-westerner. My cultural beliefs, the type of foods I prefer and my overall sense of value wreaks Midwest. Please do not generalize all people born in this state as Southern. It is a slap in the face. I have far more in common with people from Kansas (being raised 20 miles from the border) than I would ever have with Texans. I prefer unassuming to the boldness of Texans, pride myself on self-sufficiency but like the feel of community. Again this is the midwest way, so before anyone claims that “Oklahoma” is southern in culture, you should actually remember there is northeast Oklahoma.

  17. I was born and raised in Tulsa but I’ve lived all over the US, including the mid-west and the northeast. I’m very familiar with both of those cultures and I can tell you that I grew up as a southerner. I do know very few Tulsans who would claim to be mid-westerners, but they’re people who feel shame in being associated with the south. They don’t want to be mistaken for bible thumpers or bigots. I can’t blame them for that, but there are plenty of southerners who are neither. The only other people who mistake Oklahoma as being in the mid-west are those who don’t know better. Anyone who spends much time living in the real mid-west will notice the differences, especially in communication styles. I’m not just talking about accents; I’m also talking about the nuances. As a proud southerner, I wouldn’t want to be called a mid-westerner. Nothing wrong with mid-westerners. As an Okie, though, I’m not one.

  18. Having grown up in Oklahoma through my early 20’s and subsequently in other states from the west coast to the “Deep South”, I believe Oklahoma is more southern than anything else…

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