This award-winning history examines the politics of progress in America through a close look at industrial development in Appalachia since WWII.
Appalachia has played a complex role in the unfolding of American history. Early-twentieth-century critics of modernity saw the region as a remnant of frontier life that should be preserved and protected. However, supporters of material production and technology decried what they saw as a the isolation and backwardness of the region and sought to “uplift” its people through education and industrialization.
In Uneven Ground, Ronald D. Eller examines the politics of development in Appalachia while exploring the idea of progress as it has evolved in America. “Passionate, clear, concise, and at times profound,” this volume demonstrates that Appalachia's struggle to overcome poverty, to live in harmony with the land, and to respect the value of community is a truly American story (Chad Berry, author of Southern Migrants, Northern Exiles).
Winner of the Appalachian Studies Association’s Weatherford Award
and the Southern Political Science Association’s V.O. Key Award