• E-Books
  • Latest Catalogs
  • Books for Courses
  • Exhibits Listing
  • View Cart

About the Book

Beyond the Book

280 pp., 6 x 9, 17 illus., 2 maps, appends., notes, bibl., index

Paper
ISBN  978-0-8078-5794-6
Published: March 2007

Critical Regionalism

Connecting Politics and Culture in the American Landscape

By Douglas Reichert Powell


The idea of "region" in America has often served to isolate places from each other, observes Douglas Reichert Powell. Whether in the nostalgic celebration of folk cultures or the urbane distaste for "hicks," certain regions of the country are identified as static, insular, and culturally disconnected from everywhere else. In Critical Regionalism, Reichert Powell explores this trend and offers alternatives to it.

Reichert Powell proposes using more nuanced strategies that identify distinctive aspects of particular geographically marginal communities without turning them into peculiar "hick towns." He enacts a new methodology of critical regionalism in order to link local concerns and debates to larger patterns of history, politics, and culture. To illustrate his method, in each chapter of the book Reichert Powell juxtaposes widely known texts from American literature and film with texts from and about his own Appalachian hometown of Johnson City, Tennessee. He carries the idea further in a call for a critical regionalist pedagogy that uses the classroom as a place for academic writers to build new connections with their surroundings, and to teach others to do so as well.

About the Author

Douglas Reichert Powell teaches writing, American literature, and cultural studies in the department of English at Columbia College Chicago.


Reviews

"Offers useful and accessible interpretive tools and a powerful interpretative lens with which to ponder region and culture."
--Journal of American Studies

"If you do not experience Doug Reichert Powell's remarkable skills at close reading for yourself, you are missing out. Critical Regionalism is essential reading for publicly engaged intellectuals anywhere."
--Journal of Appalachian Studies

“[Filled] with a bevy of literary, geographic, cinematic, and historical sites.”
--American Literary History

"An important book."
--Journal of Appalachian Studiesl

"Important to Iowans and anybody else who lives away from centers of national power."
--The Annals of Iowa

"Necessarily suggestive, open-ended, and tentative. . . . Envisions new and utopian possibilities for thought and social action while acknowledging the formidable tactical and theoretical obstacles to such changes."
--CHOICE

Related Titles

<SPAN STYLE= "" >What Would Jesus Read?</SPAN>

What Would Jesus Read?

Popular Religious Books and Everyday Life in Twentieth-Century America

By Erin A. Smith

Lived religion through the lens of popular reading Learn More »

<SPAN STYLE= "" >Bittersweet</SPAN>

Bittersweet

Diabetes, Insulin, and the Transformation of Illness

By Chris Feudtner

Examines the human consequences of a twentieth-century medical miracle

Learn More »

<SPAN STYLE= "" >Alcohol</SPAN>

Alcohol

A History

By Rod Phillips

A 9,000-year history

Learn More »



© 2014 The University of North Carolina Press
116 South Boundary Street, Chapel Hill, NC 27514-3808
How to Order | Make a Gift | Privacy
Greenpress Initiative Network Solutions