New York: Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1930. First edition. A Very Good+ copy of a scare book, spine faded and lacking the dust jacket. Front hinge a little wobbly, but holding. Signed by seven of the twelve contributors, including Robert Penn Warren. Inscribed: "For Jack Nye Salutations to the Old Colonel! And we hope you'll stand with us -- In all esteem Donald Davidson, Lyle Lanier, John Crowe Ransom, John Donald Wade, Andrew Nelson Lytle, Allen Tate, Robert Penn Warren."
"The essays in this manifesto constitute one of the outstanding cultural documents in the history of the South. in it, twelve white Southern belletrists defended individualism against the increasingly mechanized and dehumanized society they witnessed emerging...the Southern Agrarians ultimately failed in their efforts to revive the South they saw as traditional, stable, and unified; but they succeeded in sparking debates about history, literature, race, gender, and regional identity that are still being waged today over Confederate flags, monuments, slavery, and public memory" (Donaldson). In its own time and after, I'll Take My Stand was criticized for romanticizing the antebellum South, promoting a sanitized version of the region's agrarian past and vacillating between supporting and ignoring persistent racism tied to the history of slavery. Some of the contributors would over time double down on the views within the collection; and Donald Davidson took a leading role in promoting segregation after WWII. Robert Penn Warren would be a minority within the group, shifting his views to support Civil Rights through his writing and speaking in works such as Segregation (1956) and Who Speaks for the Negro? (1965). Very Good + (Item #4557)