Power and Place (Hardback)
Preservation, Progress, and the Culture War over Land
Rural life and culture hold a practical and symbolic importance in American society. A central tenet to the survival of our cherished values—and of ourselves as a species—is the stewardship of cultural diversity and the places that foster it, like rural America. These may be the places that teach us to use land to make a living and to make a life, to forge and carry on our identities, and to feel history. They may yield a harvest of policies for managing an environmental balancing act that will preserve essential resources for America's children's children.
Power and Place: Preservation, Progress, and the Culture War over Land examines the ongoing culture wars that pit conservation against economic progress. For author Melinda Bollar Wagner, what began as a study of Appalachia's long-standing and continuing status as an energy sacrifice zone evolved into a twenty-four-year research project that sheds new light on the physical and emotional parameters of cultural attachment to land. Drawing on interviews with more than 220 residents from ten communities in five Appalachian counties, Power and Place gives voice to rural citizens whose place at the table is far from assured with regard to critical energy, environmental, and infrastructure decisions.