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Kansas and the West: New Perspectives

Kansas and the West: New Perspectives Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Kansas is steeped in the lore and legends of the Old West-from Dodge City to the Dust Bowl days. But, as these authors show, that leaves out a lot of state history.

Drawing on scholarship that has transformed our understanding of the history of both state and region, Kansas and the West introduces readers to a wide range of people, places, and themes that demonstrate the complex relationships among race, class, gender, and environment. In so doing, it also puts to rest many of the myths that have dominated western history for so long, reflecting both the positive and the negative consequences of human actions over 150 years of Kansas history.

The collection gathers eighteen key writings that take readers through three eras. The dispossession and resettlement of Native Americans is seen in such pieces as Elliot West's "Story of Three Families" and Richard White's "Cultural Landscape of the Pawnees." The nineteenth-century evolution from "Bleeding Kansas" to a modern state is seen in works ranging from writings on the Civil War era by Bill Cecil-Fronsman and Richard Sheridan to observations on road improvements by Paul Sutter. And selected aspects of Kansas in the twentieth century are seen in such contributions as Donald Worster's controversial views on the Dust Bowl, Mary Dudziak's article on desegregation in 1950s Topeka, and a look at labor in the beefpacking industry by Donald Stull and Michael Broadway.

By incorporating voices from history that have too long been lost in the din of tradition-especially the voices of Native Americans and blacks, women and laborers-Kansas and the West provides a provocative and much-needed new view of the state's past. A book that will prove fascinating for general readers, instructive for students, and an invaluable touchstone for scholars, it brings us different stories, new actors, and fresh images that challenge some of our most cherished views of the West—and in the process shows us that complexity and diversity have always characterized what we have habitually thought of as "simpler times."

Table of Contents


Introduction: Rethinking the Past, Reimagining the Future, Rita Napier

Part One. Native Americans, Dispossession, and Resettlement

The Story of Three Families, Elliott West

The Cultural Landscape of the Pawnees, Richard White

The Chippewa and Munsee Indians: Acculturation and Survival in Kansas, 1850s-1870, Joseph B. Herring

The Prairie Potawatomie: Resistance to Allotment, Anonymous

The Germans of Atchison, 1854-1859: Development of an Ethnic Community, Eleanor Turk

The Elegant Dugout: Domesticity and Moveable Culture in the United States, 1870-1900, Angel Kwolek-Folland

Part Two. Kansas in the Nineteenth Century: From "Bleeding Kansas" to Modernity

"Death to All Yankees and Traitors in Kansas": The Squatter Sovereign and the Defense of Slavery in Kansas, Bill Cecil-Fronsman

From Slavery in Missouri to Freedom in Kansas: The Influx of Black Fugitives and Contrabands into Kansas, 1854-1865, Richard Sheridan

The Popular Ideology of Segregated Schooling: Attitudes Toward the Education of Blacks in Kansas, 1854-1900, James C. Carper

Non-Partisan and All-Partisan: Rethinking Woman Suffrage and Party Politics in Gilded Age Kansas, Michael Goldberg

The Leviathan with Tentacles of Steel: Railroads in the Minds of Kansas Populists, Thomas Frank

Paved with Good Intentions: Good Roads, the Automobile, and the Rhetoric of Rural Improvement in Kansas Farmer, 1890-1914, Paul Sutter

Part Three: Twentieth-Century Kansas

Acculturation and Assimilation: Mexican Immigrants in Kansas, 1900 to World War II, Robert Oppenheimer

An "Army of Amazons": The Language of Protest in a Kansas Mining Community, 1921-1922, Ann Schofield

The Dirty Thirties: A Study in Agricultural Capitalism, Donald Worster

The Women's Land Army During World War II, Caron Smith

The Limits of Good Faith: Desegregation in Topeka, Kansas, 1950-1956, Mary L. Dudziak

The Effects of Restructuring on Beefpacking in Kansas, Donald D. Stull and Michael J. Broadway

List of Contributors


Product Details

New Perspectives
Napier, Rita
Napier, Rita
Napier, Rita
University Press of Kansas
Ethnic relations
United States - State & Local - General
Kansas History.
Kansas Ethnic relations.
United States - State & Local
Publication Date:
9.38x6.20x1.38 in. 1.59 lbs.

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Americana » General
History and Social Science » Military » General History

Kansas and the West: New Perspectives
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Product details 424 pages University Press of Kansas - English 9780700612314 Reviews:
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