The Great Frontier

The Great Frontier

by Walter Prescott Webb
     
 

ISBN-10: 0874175194

ISBN-13: 9780874175196

Pub. Date: 03/01/2003

Publisher: University of Nevada Press

First published in 1951, The Great Frontier has become one of the undisputed classics of Western history, its conclusions still hotly debated by scholars but nonetheless essential and engrossing reading for anyone who wishes to understand the history and significance of this vast and often puzzling region.

The final work of pioneer Western historian Walter

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Overview

First published in 1951, The Great Frontier has become one of the undisputed classics of Western history, its conclusions still hotly debated by scholars but nonetheless essential and engrossing reading for anyone who wishes to understand the history and significance of this vast and often puzzling region.

The final work of pioneer Western historian Walter Prescott Webb, The Great Frontier represents a daring attempt to interpret the settlement of the American West in the global context of the expansion of European civilization between the fifteenth and twentieth centuries. According to Webb's "boom hypothesis," the expansion of Europe's "Great Frontier" into the Western Hemisphere energized a static society and made possible the development of such fundamental institutions of the modern era as individualism, capitalism, and political democracy. Webb contends that the closing of the global frontier at the end of the nineteenth century, with the end of easily available empty land and readily exploited natural resources, was responsible for the crises and violence of the twentieth century and boded ill for the future of the United States's treasured democracy.

An insightful new introduction by Western historian William D. Rowley sets Webb's masterwork into the context of its own time and outlines the relevance of this still-controversial work for twenty-first-century readers.

Walter Prescott Webb (1888-1963) wrote or edited more than twenty books including The Great Plains, Divided We Stand, and The Texas Rangers. He taught at the University of Texas, the University of London, and at Oxford University. Although Webb's work sparked controversy and sharp criticism, it inspired new thinking about the role of regionalism in the nation's history.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780874175196
Publisher:
University of Nevada Press
Publication date:
03/01/2003
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
464
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)

Table of Contents

New Foreword
Preface
Acknowledgments
Introduction
Ch. 1The Frontier Factor in Modern History1
Ch. 2The Emergence of the Individual29
Ch. 3The Recrystallization of Society63
Ch. 4The Parabola of Individualism103
Ch. 5The Genesis of Modern Dynamism140
Ch. 6Frontier Windfalls and Modern Capitalism180
Ch. 7Three Unwise Bubbles203
Ch. 8The Frontier as a Modifier of Institutions239
Ch. 9The Fallacy of New Frontiers280
Ch. 10What the Frontier Touched: The Sciences303
Ch. 11What the Frontier Touched: Law, Government, and Economics320
Ch. 12What the Frontier Touched: Literature, Art, Education, and History348
Ch. 13Conclusion413
Bibliography419
Index427

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