skip to main content
College of Liberal Arts
University of Mississippi

Beth Ann Fennelly to Guest on ‘Our New South’ Podcast

UM English professor discusses evolution of the New South

Beth Ann Fennelly on podcastBeth Ann Fennelly, a University of Mississippi English professor and former Mississippi poet laureate, will discuss the evolution of Southern cities today (March 5) as a guest on the “Our New South” podcast.

The syndicated podcast is hosted by Kevin Blackstone and Robert Greene II and produced in partnership with the Levine Museum of the New South in Charlotte, North Carolina. The program seeks to expand the reach of the museum’s work in the world, preserving history and asking questions from a place of curiosity.

Beth Ann Fennelly

Beth Ann Fennelly

“I accepted the offer to speak on the podcast because I’m interested in having hard conversations that help find solutions​,” Fennelly said. “I love Mississippi and the South, and for me, that love means not looking away from social justice issues.”

The UM professor discussed the ‘New South’ concept with the co-hosts and shared her observations concerning the important work she’s doing in Mississippi.

“The invitation to speak on ‘Our New South’ came after I published an opinion piece in The New York Times that looks at the recent trend in education to tie educational funding to ‘outcomes’ – meaning solely financial outcomes,” she said. “As a professor at UM for 21 years, I have seen the life-changing power of a liberal arts education.

“I’ve seen how equipping a student with critical thinking skills prepares that student for a successful outcome – by which I mean the outcome of a meaningful life.”

Blackstone is a longtime national sports columnist at The Washington Post, a panelist on ESPN’s “Around the Horn,” a journalism professor at the University of Maryland and an occasional contributor to NPR and PBS.

Greene is an assistant professor of history at Claflin University, publications chair of the Society of U.S. Intellectual Historians and the incoming president of the African American Intellectual History Society.