Beyond the Ruins: The Meanings of Deindustrialization / Edition 1

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The immediate impact of deindustrialization—the suffering inflicted upon workers, their families, and their communities—has been widely reported by scholars and journalists. In this important volume, the authors seek to move discussion of America's industrial decline beyond the immediate ramifications of plant shutdowns by placing it into a broader social, political, and economic context. Emphasizing a historical approach, the authors explore the multiple meanings of one of the major transformations of the twentieth century.The concept of deindustrialization entered the popular and scholarly lexicon in 1982 with the publication of The Deindustrialization of America, by Barry Bluestone and Bennett Harrison. Beyond the Ruins both builds upon and departs from the insights presented in that benchmark study. In this volume, the authors rethink the chronology, memory, geography, culture, and politics of industrial change in America.Taken together, these original essays argue that deindustrialization is not a story of a single emblematic place, such as Flint or Youngstown, or a specific time period, such as the 1980s. Nor is it limited to the abandoned factory buildings associated with heavy industry. Rather, deindustrialization is a complex process that is uneven in its causes, timing, and consequences. The essays in this volume examine this process through a wide range of topics, from worker narratives and media imagery, to suburban politics, environmental activism, and commemoration.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The essays in Beyond the Ruins traverse America, with stops in rusted and reconstructed places as diverse as Atlantic City, Butte, Gary, Lansing, Oakland, Yonkers, and Youngstown. Collectively, these histories offer a powerful corrective to overdetermined accounts of economic change, reminding us that deindustrialization was the result of politics and public policy and often met with fierce, creative resistance. The authors represent the best of a new generation of American historians who research locally and think globally."—Thomas J. Sugrue, Bicentennial Class of 1940 Professor of History and Sociology, University of Pennsylvania, and author of The Origins of the Urban Crisis
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801488719
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • Publication date: 9/15/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 392
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Meanings of Deindustrialization 1
Ch. 1 "A Trial of Ghost Towns across Our Land": The Decline of Manufacturing in Yonkers, New York 19
Ch. 2 The "Fall" of Reo in Lansing, Michigan, 1955-1975 44
Ch. 3 Segregated Fantasies: Race, Public Space, and the Life and Death of the Movie Business in Atlantic City, New Jersey, 1945-2000 64
Ch. 4 Greening Anaconda: EPA, ARCO, and the Politics of Space in Postindustrial Montana 91
Ch. 5 From Love's Canal to Love Canal: Reckoning with the Environmental Legacy of an Industrial Dream 112
Ch. 6 The Wages of Disinvestment: How Money and Politics Aided the Decline of Camden, New Jersey 139
Ch. 7 California's Industrial Garden: Oakland and the East Bay in the Age of Deindustrialization 159
Ch. 8 Deindustrialization, Poverty, and Federal Area Redevelopment in the United States, 1945-1965 181
Ch. 9 Collateral Damage: Deindustrialization and the Uses of Youngstown 201
Ch. 10 Envisioning the Steel City: The Legend and Legacy of Gary, Indiana 219
Ch. 11 Monuments of a Lost Cause: The Postindustrial Campaign to Commemorate Steel 237
Ch. 12 Making Sense of Restructuring: Narratives of Accommodation among Downsized Workers 259
Ch. 13 Worker Memory and Narrative: Personal Stories of Deindustrialization in Louisville, Kentucky 284
Notes 305
Contributors 357
Index 363
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