Locality and Inequality: Farm and Industry Structure and Socioeconomic Conditions

SUNY Press
Free sample

This book explores how the recent restructuring of farming and industry has affected economic and social equality in the United States. The author explains how the farm sector has undergone a dramatic restructuring with profound effects. Moderate-size family farms, the mainstay of American agriculture, have declined during the postwar period and are now under severe financial stress. Large-scale industrialized farms — “the factories in the field,” often run by corporations — continue to expand their share of agricultural sales while small farms operated on a part-time basis appear to be replacing traditional family farming.

Lobao shows that public concern about farm restructuring is indeed warranted and that the nation now appears to be losing its most beneficial farms as well as industries. While local and regional social and economic forces and state policy can be brought to bear on these trends, Lobao particulary focuses on how community empowerment and broad-based political coalitions offer the most promise for fundamental change.
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About the author

Linda M. Lobao is Assistant Professor of Rural Sociology at The Ohio State University.

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Additional Information

Publisher
SUNY Press
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Pages
291
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ISBN
9781438411088
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Best For
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Sociology / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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The State Agricultural Experiment Stations have played a fundamental role in the development of science and agriculture in the United States. From their inception in 1887, the experiment stations have attempted to wed basic research with practical application and have helped institutionalize a utilitarian approach to agricultural science. Agricultural research and the new technology it helped to generate were major factors in the transformation of U.S. agriculture into a high technology, mechanized, science-based industry. Moreover, the experiment stations, as the first large-scale, publicly supported scientific research institutions in the United States, have also long been models for scientific institutions both here and abroad. Compiled for the 1987 centennial of the State Agricultural Experiment Stations, this volume critically examines past performance, current issues, and future directions for public agricultural research in the United States. Each of the authors, drawn from disciplines as diverse as philosophy and agronomy, focuses on a central concern for the scientific enterprise. Issues include priority setting, maintaining and promoting disciplinary and interdisciplinary effectiveness, supporting higher education for agriculture, and efficacious dissemination of research findings. By setting these issues in their historical and philosophical context, the volume suggests new approaches for meeting the continuing challenge to achieve equity, efficiency, sustainability, flexibility, conservation, and consistency with other objectives of U.S. society.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER, NAMED BY THE TIMES AS ONE OF "6 BOOKS TO HELP UNDERSTAND TRUMP'S WIN" AND SOON TO BE A MAJOR-MOTION PICTURE DIRECTED BY RON HOWARD

"You will not read a more important book about America this year."—The Economist

"A riveting book."—The Wall Street Journal

"Essential reading."—David Brooks, New York Times

Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The disintegration of this group, a process that has been slowly occurring now for more than forty years, has been reported with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck.

The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love,” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually one of their grandchildren would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of success in achieving generational upward mobility. But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out, we learn that J.D.'s grandparents, aunt, uncle, sister, and, most of all, his mother struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life, never fully escaping the legacy of abuse, alcoholism, poverty, and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. With piercing honesty, Vance shows how he himself still carries around the demons of his chaotic family history.

A deeply moving memoir, with its share of humor and vividly colorful figures, Hillbilly Elegy is the story of how upward mobility really feels. And it is an urgent and troubling meditation on the loss of the American dream for a large segment of this country.

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