From Cotton Belt to Sunbelt: Federal Policy, Economic Development, and the Transformation of the South, 1938-1980 [NOOK Book]

Overview

Investigating the effects of federal economic policies, From Cotton Belt to Sunbelt is an analysis of the South's remarkable odyssey from what President Roosevelt called the 'Nation's No. 1 Economic Problem' in the 1930s to the Sunbelt of the 1970s. Decrying the South's economic backwardness and political conservativism, the Roosevelt Administration launched a series of aggressive programs to reorder the Southern economy. After 1950, however, Keynesianism replaced New Deal reform as the mainstay of national ...
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From Cotton Belt to Sunbelt: Federal Policy, Economic Development, and the Transformation of the South, 1938-1980

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Overview

Investigating the effects of federal economic policies, From Cotton Belt to Sunbelt is an analysis of the South's remarkable odyssey from what President Roosevelt called the 'Nation's No. 1 Economic Problem' in the 1930s to the Sunbelt of the 1970s. Decrying the South's economic backwardness and political conservativism, the Roosevelt Administration launched a series of aggressive programs to reorder the Southern economy. After 1950, however, Keynesianism replaced New Deal reform as the mainstay of national economic policy, and the national security state supplanted the social welfare state as the South's principal benefactor.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book brings together a wealth of material about southern economic development. It is an important contribution to southern economic history."—Journal of American History

"The first [study] to analyze and document the impact of federal policy....An important work....Cannot be ignored by serious students of modern southern history."—Journal of Southern History

"Well researched and well argued....Schulman has made an important contribution to the historiography on the modern South."—American Historical Review

"Warrants the attention of both Southern devotees and the general audience of historians."—Journal of Economic History

"As synthesis...[the book] is superb....A valuable guide to the workings of the modern southern economy."—Journal of Regional Science

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195363449
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 1/17/1991
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • File size: 2 MB

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 16, 2013

    Highly recommend

    Over 20 years since its original publication, this book remains enormously relevant to America’s current political fights over inequality and the appropriate role and size of government. Schulman provides ample data and a focused historical account to document how the post-New Deal South leveraged federal dollars to subsidize its business-friendly, union-hostile, low-tax economy, while impeding policies aimed at alleviating poverty and investing in human capital. Despite its academic density, From Cotton Belt is well-worth reading for its ability to interconnect U.S. economic development with its politics. Its main limitation is a lack of clear policy alternatives to state-backed Southern capitalism beyond hinting that the social welfare initiatives rejected by the South but embraced by the North also failed to eliminate poverty because they were too tepid, fragmented, and insufficiently redistributive. Regardless, Schulman shows how the South’s evolving governing philosophy touting non-reliance on “big government” was belied by a robust history of taking federal dollars, from highway money to agricultural subsidies to defense contracts. Moreover, this commitment to supporting unfettered business growth while morally denigrating support for low-income citizens not only captured the Republican Party but has come to dominate and frame the national conversation over social and economic policy. We may not all be Southerners but, like it or not, we are all now effectively living in the South. We might as well know how we ended up here.

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