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The eleven nations of the United States and their cultures (businessinsider.com)
120 points by daddy_drank on Dec 6, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 98 comments

American state boundaries clearly do not reflect these national regions. Federal states have boundaries that either serve to unite separate territories or to administer a united territory. It has probably a source of strength in the US, that states are either much too small or contain multiple different areas in them, since it fosters a broader, national US identity rather than an identity as a New Netherlander or a Far Westerner.

If Americans tried to reorganise their boundaries along the lines of the article's map, they would probably stop "coming together" and start "moving apart" in the course of a few generations. In the short term, though, it would probably ease a lot of the pressure currently felt.

Germany is another federal state made stronger by having internal boundaries that don't reflect historical identities (Bavaria being the weakness), and which has been able to foster a unified national identity in the past seventy years despite excluding Austria and losing much territory.

Canada's borders are more ... logical and accurate (visible in the map), and their federation is much weaker for it. The long border with the culturally similar US probably contributes to the weakness of Canada as a federal state.

What do you mean by “weakness as a federal state”?

In terms of division of power between states and federal, the Canadian federal government has much more power than the US federal government.

After I learned more about it, I was quite surprised at the level of autonomy that US states have.

US states had even more autonomy up to the Wickard vs Filburn[1] case, which paved the way for regulatory bodies at the federal level. That's why it took a full fucking amendment to prohibit alcohol in the 1920s whereas today the DEA can slap drugs on and off at whim.

[1] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wickard_v._Filburn

US states are (in most respects) theoretically more powerful than Canadian provinces, and this does show up, for example, in the criminal code being federal legislation in Canada, but state legislation in the US (though the US federal government also gets to enact criminal law, which seems rather bizarre).

However, in practice, Canada provinces tend to be more powerful than US states, perhaps because there are fewer of them. In both countries, the federal government tries to intrude using means such as conditional transfers of funds - taxing the citizens of states/provinces and only giving back the money if the state/province does as they wish. In Canada, this is most notable for health care, which is supposedly a provincial responsibility, but which the federal government meddles in extensively.

> In both countries, the federal government tries to intrude using means such as conditional transfers of funds - taxing the citizens of states/provinces and only giving back the money if the state/province does as they wish.

Yeah, that's super annoying. For an example here in the states: "In 1984, Congress passed the National Minimum Drinking Age Act, which required states to raise their ages for purchase and public possession to 21 by October 1986 or lose 10% of their federal highway funds" [0].

[0]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._history_of_alcohol_minimu...

Switzerland seems to be doing OK as a counterexample. Its cantons have a high level of self-government and a history as independent states and cultures. Yet Switzerland is a prosperous country with a strong national identity and minimal talk of secession by the cantons.

Switzerland individually is a bad example because it is pretty much the size of an individual US state, so it's cantons would just be counties in that example. A better comparison would be Switzerland's power-balance with the EU, especially in comparison to the extremes in population like Germany or Malta

Smaller countries are far less likely to suffer from secessionist or identitarian agitations, especially small and wealthy countries like Switzerland. Comparison to Switzerland and similar countries is not instructive.

This is especially true for language. Linguistic division within countries is often a source of tension, even in smaller countries. In larger countries, it is almost assuredly going to lead to tension, especially so during times of hardship. This is why the United States must remain an English speaking country. Major regional linguistic differences would quickly fuel secessionist energy in the US, given how much diversity already exists even with relative linguistic homogeneity.

Just to harp on the language point a bit more: language is the soil in which culture grows, and a unified culture is critical for any functioning entity, whether that be a family, a corporation, a club, or a country.

A counter example is India. Every state is divided along language and cultural lines. The individual states look more like countries in the EU. But there is no strong separatist movement.

Being a much smaller country, in terms of land and population, I would assume variations within must be lighter too.

I don't understand what you mean by "lighter". You're aware that Switzerland has four national languages, right? That's a big variation!

As a tourist, crossing from the German-speaking to the French-speaking part, the differences were quite noticeable. I was told that something like 30% of the population never cross the language line. "Never" is probably a hyperbole, but the point is that even within such a small territory there are significant cultural differences.

It's it possible the USSR drew the boundaries of all the 'stans with this logic in mind? Creating diversity which they could argue needed Moscow to unite and supervise. I think Kazakhstan for example was largely nomadic prior to Soviet invasion? Though others e.g. Uzbekistan had a stronger identity already.

"Germany is another federal state made stronger by having internal boundaries that don't reflect historical identities (Bavaria being the weakness)"

Wouldn't the former East German region also reflect historical identify with a hard borderline? (albeit on a short time scale)

What do you mean by "weaker federal state" when describing Canada?

I'm guessing this is the undercurrents of demand for independence from Quebec.

I think this shows the importance of linguistic unity in cultural unity and therefore national unity. Germany's "strong federal state" (which is pretty decentralised in practice) is likely also a result of this.

Of course, some people like to turn "is" into "ought", resulting in the problems of the 20th century when some people tried to make the German national borders match the linguistic border.

I live in rural USA. State boundaries do bring our town together with the major city in our state, the problem is their voice drowns ours out. Wouldn’t more people be represented if we started splitting up states? Wouldn’t we all be better off from less monopolized regions?

on the one hand I think you are probably right in practical terms, but isn't this apologism for what is essentially gerrymandering at a large scale?

It's interesting to see how canned phrases to represent certain concepts can become nonsensical when put together :

> The Deep South was established by English slave lords from Barbados and was styled as a West Indies-style slave society, Woodard notes. It has a very rigid social structure and fights against government regulation that threatens individual liberty. Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Texas, Georgia, and South Carolina are all part of the Deep South.

The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty? Would anyone be able to explain how that works?

Thinking about who has the vote back when the USA became independent, I think of those lords as being close in character and power to dark age European kings, and I mentally map their slaves to feudal serfs.[0]

My cynical reading is that describes an attitude of “if you let someone else tell you what to do that makes you a peasant, so when we do it it’s fine because we do it to peasants, but when other people do something much milder to us that’s evil because it means treating us as peasants.”

Aristocrats have often given me that impression, no matter the era or region.

[0] feudalism had actual slaves, in addition to serfs, but I’m not claiming deep wisdom here — only personal impressions and the metaphors I use to make sense of the world.

A better analogy would be to the lower, mostly independent rungs of a feudal society like the English yeoman. Antebellum, the general attitude in the South was that even the poorest person was entitled to live his life as he saw fit on his land, and should be regarded as equal to a rich plantation owner with employees and slaves. There was generally no bureaucracy that could force a poor person to lose his land, make his children leave home for school, incur expenses, etc. Social customs somewhat enforced neighborly behavior in place of regulation. This is how slaveholding could persist; rights depended on having just a bit of land.

That is why the Reconstruction of the South was so painful; it was essentially a social and political revolution by top-down administration to add bureaucracy and consolidate the economy into larger farms and industrial owners/laborers.

> even the poorest person was entitled to live his life as he saw fit on his land

.. but by implication non-landowners were second class citizens, and nonwhite people were unpersons?

> Social customs somewhat enforced neighborly behavior in place of regulation

Including lynching.

> .. but by implication non-landowners were second class citizens, and nonwhite people were unpersons?

Yes, but remember that half of the adult population everywhere was a second-class citizen simply because of their gender. The idea that some people don't deserve as many rights as others isn't an aberration we can lay at the feet of the plantation owners.

Lynchings were post-war, mostly post reconstruction. I think second-class citizen is close enough to work.

Although IIRC they can be thought of as the end of a long tradition of mob justice being the system, or at least a large part of the system for keeping order. And directed against (supposed) criminals of all colors.

> the poorest person was entitled to live his life as he saw fit on his land, and should be regarded as equal to a rich plantation owner with employees and slaves

I think this describes neither medieval Europe nor the antebellum US South. Certainly in Europe, a king needed no 'bureaucracy' to take anything he wanted from anyone at any time. Lords could largely do the same with impunity, since they had the power to do so and were largely immune from prosecution due to the heavily politicized courts prior to the rise of heavy industry in 1700, after which non-lord authorities like commercial barons arose, and demanded better legal representation.

IMHO, the US south never really lost that same feudal sensibility, that titled folk deserve greater power / immunity than commoners and the demi-people below that. Before modern telecommunications which enabled enforcement of federal law, that mindset allowed ad hoc laws like Jim Crow to displace formal legal codes in the courts and enabled the segregationist inequality that persisted until the 1960's. I believe that even today that value system lives on in hearts and minds, even if the courts are shaped by it much less.

Thank you, and I somewhat agree with those qualifications. The main point is that the Southern culture tried to embody and enshrine something akin to yeoman’s mindset and rights (if glorified given the limitations in reality) and the Northeast, while descended from founders who admired some of those principles, differed culturally enough to mostly abandon it.

> who has the vote

Years ago I saw a book on the history of extending the franchise in the US. One story stuck with me. In some early close vote to extend franchise to those (white males) with wealth but not land, one proponent described his decision as something vaguely like "If I thought for a moment, that the US would every be anything but an agrarian nation, I would of course share my colleagues concerns, and oppose this measure. But thankfully...". Franchise extension by misjudgement. I wonder if that's a pattern?

> The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty? Would anyone be able to explain how that works?

It only valued individual liberties for free individuals, like slave owners. Slaves are by definition not free individuals, so the right to individual liberty by definition didn't apply to them.

It's practically tautological if you substitute the word "liberty" with "freedom".

No, it's far from a tautology. A strong belief in individual liberty was a distinguishing characteristic of that society. And especially of that political society, which meant landowners. Having lots of slaves was another characteristic.

The useful comparison is just up the coast, Massachusetts was almost the opposite, a theocracy of busybodies. Where a town council could re-arrange people's living arrangements if they thought X was a bit of a loner wanting to be out in the woods. And of course enthusiasm for every detail of the approved religion was not optional.

The tautology is that non-free people (slaves) do not have freedom (AKA individual liberty).

> non-free people (slaves) do not have freedom

Yes, that's what being a slave is.

> The tautology is

I still don't know what you're trying to say here. Do you think that all slave-holding states had a strong belief in individual liberty? Saudi Arabia is a good counter-example, not much tradition of writing tracts about the virtues of greek democracy there. No, the princelings sure jump when the big man says jump.

When people say that the Cavaliers were into individual liberty, they aren't saying the blindingly obvious fact that non-slaves generally preferred not to be enslaved.

I was responding to the original comment a few steps up which said:

> The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty? Would anyone be able to explain how that works?

I agree with you, but it's not a tautology. It's saying that free individuals (slave-owners) should have freedom to do stuff they want, e.g. own slaves, without having a government stop them from doing it.

That's the basis of the model - "I do what I want, and you also do what I want."

Obviously, it fails as a universal. Freedom that operates on the basis of economic, political, or physical coercion of others isn't freedom at all.

Which would be fine in a more mature system, because the basic question in any political organisation is where to place the trade-off between individual freedom and personal responsibility to others.

The US model is all for individual freedom, but has real issues with the concept of personal responsibility to others - which it fails to solve by pretending the problem has never existed, and is irrelevant.

One way out of this is by narrowing your definition of morally relevant others - which historically has excluded women, or slaves, or people of other races (and currently excludes non-human animals, but that's a broader debate...)

The definition of freedom depends on what you value, and what you value varies with time and place. Were sweatshop workers in New York City free? Ranch hand employees out west? Chinese railroad workers in the USA? Are starving workers freer than well fed slaves? Theres a big push underway now to get rid of all American civil rights in favor of security theater, will we be free once we eliminate the Bill of Rights? Kinda unclear what this "free" thing is and who has it.

> Were sweatshop workers in New York City free? Ranch hand employees out west? Chinese railroad workers in the USA?

Slaves were definitionally not free under the law - their bodies were property of masters, just like farm animals were. If those slaves escaped their owners, they were legally allowed to be hunted down and returned.

That is a fundamental difference than the sweatshop, railway, or other workers, even though those workers were also abused by their employers. They still had the option to walk away, even if it meant accepting the destitution as a result. Lots of them did walk away and starve. Some toiled away as workers generation upon generation. A few went on to build great wealth and influence, as is evidenced by the rise of the early industrialist families of the United States.

> Are starving workers freer than well fed slaves?

Absolutely, and that doesn't excuse a system that lets free workers starve, just as a full stomach does not excuse the enslavement of humans.

> Theres a big push underway now to get rid of all American civil rights in favor of security theater


4th amendment, 2nd amendment. You really don’t see this?

No, I really don’t. Could you elaborate?

2nd amendment rights are stronger than ever. 4th amendment rights issues kinda peaked about 10 years ago, and although Snowden certainly shined a bright light on some shady things, I would hardly call it a “big push”, given the backlash and the fact that the public doesn’t seem to be going along with it.

I’m much more concerned about the entire public’s outright willingness to broadcast every facet of our lives right out in public for anyone to see (what the IC would call “open source” intelligence) than any spying the government is doing on our private information.

2nd amendment is doing ok I’ll walk that one back. 4th amendment is dead and buried. Totally agree that the public not giving a fuck is a severe problem. Cheers

If you want a great explanation then I recommend reading this book review: https://slatestarcodex.com/2016/04/27/book-review-albions-se...

The short story is that they valued the unlimited freedom for a single individual more than the general freedom of all individuals. In a sense, it's the finding and feeding utility monsters on the theory that that will maximize utility for society.

The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty? Would anyone be able to explain how that works?

"Don't tell me what I can and can't do with my property!"

These people would have to have considered slaves people in order to extend individual liberty to them.

I think these people didn't care about individual liberties in general, but on their OWN individual liberties.

> The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty? Would anyone be able to explain how that works?

Same way as in classical Greece (both Sparta and Athens, etc.) and Rome - slave-holding aristocrats value their own freedom highly, will fight and die for it.

Actually, that led to hatred of monarchy and use of republican forms with class equals. But 'sic semper tyrannis' wasn't a servant's battle cry.

The author is obviously only taking about white people there. You’d have a different culture representing black folks. (I’d love to see if white culture is even dominate there or only concentrated in those with power).

The whole article completely erases black people. The people descended from black slaves comprise a nation in themselves.

IIRC the argument in Albion's Seed (which is an earlier and more academic book which overlaps this one) is that many things we think of as particular to african americans are aspects of the surrounding culture that were dropped later by the upper class. It's been a while but the examples I remember are included many foods (and styles of preparation -- deep frying was only for the rich, fat to spare) and accents. But a few centuries later the rich kids started getting sent to university, and stopped speaking like that.

>The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty? Would anyone be able to explain how that works?

This was apparently a really important question amoung European liberal democrats (which is a broad group ranging from constitutional monarchists all the way to social democrats) in the 19th century. Many of the more conservative liberals were really worried about balancing equality and order in a way where the state still made sensible decisions. I guess, pre-civil war America makes an interesting case study comparing North and South.

I listened to a BBC history podcast discussing this question with some depth, maybe you can find it useful as well [0].

[0] https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/b09vyw0x

This was a contradiction noticed by the contemporary commentators themselves. From David Frum's article: http://davidfrum.com/article/were-the-founding-fathers-liber...

Yet it’s a very striking fact that the language that to our ears sounds most “libertarian” in the Founding generation tended most often to issue from those most committed to slavery. By contrast, the Founding Fathers who sound most “statist” — Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams — tended also to be most hostile to slavery.

This disjunction is more than some odd little paradox of history. It is a resounding klaxon warning of the enormous gap between the 18th century mindset and our own. Samuel Johnson jeered at the American colonists: “How is that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty among the drivers of negroes?” Johnson’s accusation of hypocrisy is obviously well-founded, but there is something more going on here than hypocrisy. It was precisely the intimate awareness of the horror of unfreedom — and possibly guilt for the denial of freedom to others — that inspired the passionate concern for liberty among so many slaveholders. When Patrick Henry said that he would rather be dead than share the fate of the 75 slaves he owned, he was not engaging in metaphor. But he was also not expressing 21st century libertarianism.

> It has a very rigid social structure and fights against government regulation that threatens individual liberty

Frankly I dont really see the contradiction. You can have a 'rigid' social structure and still frown upon the interventions of external forces such as government on that social structure. Not liberty in general but specifically liberty from government.

I think that it is freedom from government rules but lots of strict social rules. You can do what you want but don't get "uppity" and know you place. We will tell you what is ok not the Washington DC.

Presumably it valued individual liberty for a very select group of individuals.

slaves were seen as we see sheep and cattle now: property. would you apply "individual liberty" to farm animals in today's age?

> The pro- slavery rigid society that somehow values individual liberty?

One thing described it's history, another - current state of affairs.

When people with wealth and power talk about "liberty," they pretty much always mean their liberty to control others without the oversight of a central government. When the senate assassinated Caesar, they weren't trying to preserve freedom for the plebs—they were trying to preserve the republic that gave them, the privileged few, power over everyone else. Most of the Magna Carta was about protecting the barons from a king who might try to take away too much power. Present-day conservatives and right-libertarians will use the word "liberty" to mean "private property."

Upstate NY is not Yankeedom. It is Greater Appalachia.

Also, many of the Midwest states are less Yankeedom and more Heartland.

Also, Dallas is Greater Appalachia and not Deep South yet Houston is Deep South and not New France?

Also, LA is El Norte and not the Left Coast?

Was this map based on 200 year old data?

Yeah even the Nine Nations, from the 1980's, is more accurate, with better names (though I'd like Ecotopia to be called Cascadia)


Greater Appalachia definitely extends through PA in a T shape across the center of the state and the northern border (sometimes called Pennsyltucky) and covers at least the Southern Tier in New York.

See the image here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics_of_Pennsylvania

Like most states, Pennsylvania's rural areas tend to be more conservative and support Republicans. The resulting political map of Pennsylvania is therefore a red "T" in the center of the state with the Pittsburgh and Philadelphia areas a strong blue.

Putting Upstate into one bucket is going to be problematic no matter what label you give it. The southern tier is definitely Appalachia, the eastern side is Yankeedom, and WNY is heartland.

Dutchess County is Greater Appalachia, but I don't know that I'd say the industrial northern part is.

Colorado as a Far West state makes little sense- where the people live is mostly Left Coast, with El Norte in the Southern part of the state.

Where the people live (I assume you mean front range area) is a mix of Far West and Left Coast -- the newcomers are more the latter, and they seem to influence the previous population. You'll know that is is no longer Far West when TABOR is repealed.

Interesting divisions, and certainly something that can be argued about forever.

My feeling is that Michigan probably has most in common with Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, Maine and the rest of New England. I'm not sure it's a Yankee kind of thing though. More of a shared culture based on the environment, lakes, hunting, and exposure/familiarity with large forests.

I wonder how, in a parallel universe, such states combined with Ontario/New Brunswick/Newfoundland would end up looking like, as a nation surrounding the Great Lakes and North Atlantic coast.

Sorry I'm rambling.

Strangely, I'd say the CO frontrange is more Left Coast than West.

It's a good attempt, but needs data backing. I remember another article that took daily commutes and then Voronoi Diagram'd them into a few 'states'. Can't find the link though.

to some extent, such a map would almost have to have fractal complexity. I can identify neighborhoods in my midatlantic city that fit into several different "nations".

There's a really interesting discussion of this on the Cracked Podcast: https://www.earwolf.com/episode/the-11-nations-of-america...

Parts of East Baton Rouge Parish are liberal enough to be considered New France, but Livingston Parish doesn't deserve the title -- it's more like 50/50. The line may be determined by Catholic vs Protestant; New France consists of Catholic majority Parishes.

I'm a part of the French revival movement in South Louisiana to help preserve the culture. Most French speakers are 60+ years old, which is sad. Before about 1970, children suffered corporal punishment if they spoke French in school. Blame it on the Anglo-protestants.

There isn't much French spoken in Nouvelle Orleans anymore. Same goes for Baton Rouge. This largely happened after Reconstruction: some of the Yankee leadership who took over were just as xenophobic as Southern slave-owners. I'm not trying to defend this change in leadership having to occur, it was necessary to make sure the South didn't try to keep slavery alive. Unfortunately, nationalist leadership was much like today's conservatives in wanting the only official language of L'etats Unis to be Anglais.

South Louisiana is highly underrated though, especially the city of Baton Rouge. Weed is decriminalized, there's an incredible symphony orchestra, plenty of art museums, and damn good food. But it's much more "American" of a town than New Orleans or Acadiana.

Here's a hilarious article explaining the division between North and South Louisiana:


Anyway, laissez les bons temps rouler, vous-autres!

I am in South Louisiana as well, close to New Orleans. Grandfather is full Cajun, grew up in Cutoff, with his father being the captain of a shrimp boat.

One of my goals next year is to learn French. Do you speak French?

That's cool. Je parle un peu de francais, et vous? Parisien, pas cadien, malheursement.

No, not yet. It will most likely be Parisien as well, since learning Cajun French would make the journey much more difficult.

There are some mild differences in vocabulary and pronunciation (the Cajun 'R' is way more difficult) but they're mutually intelligible.

Good to know! Where do you find people speaking Cajun French in Louisiana? We went to the Festivals Acadiens et Créoles a few months ago, the only time I heard French was in the music, no one seemed to use French during a conversation.

Mainly Lafayette for me. Vermillionville has French speakers as well. There are a couple of French meetups in the Baton Rouge area as well.

There was a book and multipart PBS documentary by Robert MacNeil where he traveled and interviewed Americans about how they spoke and the evolution of accents.

Do You Speak American? (2005)



The lack of demarcations that correlate at all with major economic area distinctions is a red flag to me that this map is questionable.

There's definitely a big cultural distinction between the Boston/DC corridor part of the east coast states and everything else in those states. DC has more in common with Boston than DC has in common with other parts (e.g. Indiana) of the "midlands" panhandle the map has it occupying. The fact that there's a line smack through the DC metro itself is kind of a wtf. There should probably be "left coast" dots for the counties that Denver, CO and Austin, TX are in. Maine North of Portland has more in common with Quebec and western Pennsylvania than it does with anything in Southern New England. If those are my gripes based on my personal experience then I would wager the areas with which I have no experience are similarly inaccurate.

Edit: Just confirmed with people from Michigan, Indiana and west Virginia. They all had some pretty raised eyebrows at this map.

Edit2: Asked some Mainers, one called the map "bold".

The "left coast" has a similar idea in Cascadia. Up here in Seattle you'll see what's called the Doug flag, a symbol of Cascadian independence.


The author hasn’t spent much time in Utah, if he didn’t split it out.

The article aggregates. But outside of Salt Lake City, what did the author miss? Nevada is different from Las Vegas as well.

I was impressed with the north/south divide in Missouri and the east/west divide in Tennessee. However, I wouldn't put Santa Barbara, Los Angeles and San Diego in El Norte. The author may have had better reasons though.

The buzzing beehive? The state is predominantly LDS. It’s one step away from being a theocracy.

But there are strong patches of LDS in Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Idaho. Harry Reid was LDS. Crapo and Udall are. I'd say LDS is an element of Far West culture in the way Protestantism is part of New England.

True, but there’s balance in the other states.

Chicago is in Yankeedom? I don't understand that entire western half of Yankeedom, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

SLO, Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, Orange County and San Diego are El Norte?

I got a good laugh out of seeing all of Wisconsin marked as Yankeedom. Starting to think they did that because it would look weird to have the majority of Wisconsin being "The midlands" when it's a northernmost state.

I lived in Santa Barbara for the last 15 years. Hispanic culture definitely dominates in the area.

I find it to be a sizeable crock.

Look through the descriptions of the regions. Some are lauded for 'valuing education', 'hard work', etc. Others are tied to slavery, are "intensely suspicious", and so on.

This is a bunch of sorry tropes that don't hold water. It would have been just as easy to characterize the lauded regions as homeless poop-havens and the other parts 'eco-friendly' because the tree-to-human ratio is so much better.

This map is really hit and miss for me. As a Missourian, I agree with the way Missouri is split up, right down the counties.

But the Upper Midwest (sans Chicago) is way closer to the rest of the Midwest than it is to New England. It has its own distinct flavor compared to the Lower Midwest. But not in "Yankee" way--more like "pre-Canada."

I don't know for you, but all images were 404 in this article for me.


I had always divided the US into four separate countries but Woodard's theory of 11 isn't so far off.

I had a Prof in college who wrote a book about the US being 4 sections since its founding, he called them folkways


I never thought it had its basis in genetics, though that is pretty interesting. At least from what I remember in reading Albion's seeds it was the result of distinct cultures.

I think the division can be pretty broad. I live in Boston, and I've sometimes heard comparisons of North Shore vs South Shore to be culturally rooted in Puritans settling North, vs Pilgrims settling in South. Generally genetically the same but a little different starting point, culturally.

There's no conflict here. In a world where people were perfectly blank slates, and all such patterns were purely culturally transmitted, you would still expect a giant Yankee blob on the map just because they mostly came from East Anglia. (And the people of England when they left weren't perfectly mixed, most had lived in one region for millennia.)

Colin Woodard: American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America [2011]

Woddard's take on Trump victory


The map with the nations extending into Canada makes me think of Manifest Destiny.

Ugh. Another attempt to box in geographical regions so the author can make a name for himself.

Wrong link. The link sends readers to the bottom of the page

> www.businessinsider.com/the-11-nations-of-the-united-states-2015-7#first-nation-most-of-whose-people-live-in-the-northern-part-of-the-country-is-made-up-of-native-americans-11

should be

> www.businessinsider.com/the-11-nations-of-the-united-states-2015-7

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