Download America's Fight Over Water: The Environmental and Political by Kevin Wehr PDF

By Kevin Wehr

This ebook inquires into the family among society and its ordinary setting via reading the historic discourse round numerous circumstances of nation development within the American West-the development of 3 excessive dams from 1928 to 1963.

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Additional resources for America's Fight Over Water: The Environmental and Political Effects of Large-Scale Water Systems (American Popular History and Culture (Routledge (Firm)).)

Sample text

Cheap hydroelectric energy helped spur the growth of what Lotchin calls California’s metropolitan-military complex (1992). But such paths to prosperity have been uneven over the West—some less powerful states have competed with California over resources and political capital, not always winning, but also not always losing. HISTORIOGRAPHY OF WATER AND THE AMERICAN WEST Water is crucial to California’s dominance, but much of the early reclamation historiography tended to romanticize western development (Lee 1980) and not recognize the complexity of nature-society relationships.

In California, Hundley argues, the power of cities, landowners, and miners all influenced the development of a water policy that had an ad hoc character. The California doctrine has led to speculation and fraud (Hundley 1992; McWilliams 1949). The existence of the Wyoming doctrine, Pisani argues, is an indication of the fragmentation of the West. States had radically different policies, each in its own way attempting to avoid federal administration of public lands and water in the West (Pisani 1992:68).

The process of state building in the American West certainly was characterized by the administrative ordering of nature and society, and this was accomplished by a strong state that acted, at times, with fierce authority. The ideology of high modernism is also exhibited, though in impure and varying forms, but there was not an anemic civil society. To the contrary, the civil society of the West was a vibrant force that invited the state to help build an infrastructure to support the economy and control the territory.

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