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The American West in 2000

Essays in Honor of Gerald D. Nash

Edited by Richard W. Etulain and Ferenc M. Szasz

Publication Year: 2003

The ten original essays commissioned for this book focus on historical subjects in the post-World War II American West. The late Gerald Nash, in whose honor the essays were written, made major contributions to the study of modern American and western American history, and his impact on those fields is demonstrated in these essays by several generations of his students and colleagues.

Published by: University of New Mexico Press

Front Cover

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Title Page

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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-viii

After Gerald D. Nash retired in the mid-1990s from full-time teaching at the University of New Mexico, he returned occasionally to campus to chat with his longtime colleagues in the Department of History. Frequently these conversations turned to classic and new historical writings about the recent United States and the American West and sometimes, at our instigation, to Nash’s shaping role...

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pp. 1-5

As noted in Richard W. Etulain’s preface, this book of essays on the American West since 1945 is dedicated to the memory of University of New Mexico historian Gerald D. Nash (1928–2000). During his thirty-four-year career at the university—1961–95—Nash taught more than 15,000 undergraduate students. In addition, he directed scores of master’s theses and doctoral dissertations on various...

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Autobiography: Roads to the West

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pp. 6-16

Like many historians of the American West, I was not born in the region but came to it from somewhere else. Probably my road to becoming a western historian was longer and more indirect than that of many others. For the last forty years, however, more than one-half of my adult life, I became an adopted New Mexican, which gave me a vantage point for viewing the western experience in...

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The Cultural Renaissance in Native American and Celtic Worlds: 1940-2000

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pp. 17-34

In the mid-1990s a popular American mail-order music company known as Green Linnet issued a well-received album titled The Celts Rise Again. At about the same time, a new talk show,sponsored by American Indian Radio on Satellite, hit the National Public Radio airwaves under the title Native America Calling. In the late fall of 1999,a 696-page history of Scotland, The Scottish Nation, 1700–2000,...

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Will the Circle Be Unbroken?: Tourism and the National Park System in the Twenty-First-Century West

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pp. 35-51

Picture this. Sunrise breaks over the corrugated majesty of northern Arizona’s Grand Canyon, casting its thin vale of amber light across the vast chasm until the canyon’s walls radiate with the brilliance of vermilion red. The silence of early dawn, normally punctuated by the chatter of restless birds and the cautious steps of an occasional deer or rabbit, is suddenly disrupted by the unmistakable clatter of motorized vehicles...

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The Bureau of Reclamation and the West, 1945-2000

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pp. 52-68

Visit the Bureau of Reclamation web site and you’ll discover the following: The bureau is the nation’s second-largest wholesale water supplier and the nation’s second-largest producer of hydroelectric power, after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It operates fifty-eight hydroelectric plants, 348 dams and reservoirs, and 308 recreation areas visited by...

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Activist Women in the West and Their Fight for Political Equity, 1960-2000

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pp. 69-84

As the year 1999 came to a close and the year 2000 began, the United States’ activist women of the last third of the twentieth century arranged to meet in Baltimore at the end of March to reflect upon the most exciting time of their lives. There they would plan their strategy for completing the revolution they had started in the 1960s. Few people outside this group of movers and shakers...

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The Cultural Life of Boise, Idaho, 1950-2000

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pp. 85-104

At the turn of the millennium Boise, Idaho, is enjoying a cultural renaissance. Although outsiders often misunderstand Idaho, Boise, a cultural center in isolation, is overcoming its bad press and darker experiences while its high standard of living and cultural life flourish. Symbolic of its evolution was NBC’s choice of Boise to represent the mountain time zone in showcasing one location for each...

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“Squeezing Out the Profits”: Mining and the Environment in the U.S.West, 1945-2000

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pp. 105-126

The mining industry collided head-on with a new environmentalism during the last quarter of the twentieth century. For the first time in American history, the nation’s citizens valued the environment and its resources for their own sake rather than just as commodities in a global economy. A new ecological consciousness, although based in science like the technocratic worldview, called for an end to the...

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Organized Religion and the Search for Community in the Modern American West

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pp. 127-142

The religious history of the American West bears out Cox’s observations. Indeed, religious tension lay at the center of the historic Native-Spanish, Latterday Saint–Gentile, and Anglo-Hispanic encounters. By the dawn of the twentieth century,however, this overt antagonism had largely faded.Grudgingly tolerant of one another’s positions, the organized faiths of the region seemed content to...

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Angels and Apples: The Late-Twentieth-Century Western City, Urban Sprawl, and the Illusion of Urban Exceptionalism

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pp. 143-163

An American Airlines traveler could spot the discrepancy on landing anywhere in California at any AA stop. It appeared at San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, or Palmdale in the Antelope Valley north of Los Angeles. The California city was supposed to sprawl, but in fact it was now growing rather compactly. Large, two-story houses, shoehorned onto small, cookie-cutter lots prevailed and were supplemented...

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The American West, the World, and the Twenty-First Century

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pp. 164-185

In 1972, the ever-gracious, urbane Howard Lamar, Yale historian and then incoming president of the Western History Association, sat at breakfast in the huge coffee shop of the Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C., where the Organization of American Historians was convening, discussing with his program chair the program for the upcoming WHA conference that autumn at New Haven. With a...

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Gerald D. Nash and the Twentieth-Century American West

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pp. 186-198

When Gerald D. Nash’s pioneering book The American West in the Twentieth Century appeared in 1973, it received decidedly positive reviews. Readers saluted the overview volume as the much needed study of a hitherto neglected subject. As one commentator noted, Nash’s insightful synthesis would now “be the starting point for future serious scholarship” on the modern American West. Nash’s...


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pp. 199-201


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pp. 202-208

Back Cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9780826329455
E-ISBN-10: 0826329454
Print-ISBN-13: 9780826329431
Print-ISBN-10: 0826329438

Page Count: 216
Publication Year: 2003