This welcome contribution to the history of the civil rights movement, Southern race-based politics of the 1950s and 1960s, and the public career of North Carolina’s Jesse Helms is well researched, extensively footnoted, intelligently written, and interesting to read… an engrossing book.
--CHOICE: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries

Thrift also goes beyond the typical stereotypes of southern bigots to make Helms’s footprint on the conservative movement large.
--The Journal of American History

Thrift’s volume is a vital addition to the literature on mid-twentieth-century conservatism, southern political change, and the growth of conservative media.
--Journal of Southern History

An important book that provides historians with another lens to evaluate the conservative movement. . . .May hold the key to understanding why southerners came to reject the New Deal and embrace the rhetoric of free enterprise.
--Southern Historian

Offers an important reminder whatever consensus existed in the 1950s and early 1960s existed largely among elites. Grass-roots politics was far more contentious.
--North Carolina Historical Review

Thrift’s work tells a significant story, and he deftly shows the reader the connection between Helms’s pious incitement and the contemporary conservative message. . . . His book is grounded in history but with a clear eye to the present.
--Journal of American Culture

[A] well-researched account that demonstrates the key role that Jesse Helms and his "pious incitements" had on the making of southern conservativism and the Republican Party in the twentieth century.
--Florida Historical Quarterly