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American Green: Class, Crisis, and the Deployment of Nature in Central Park, Yosemite, and Yellowstone

Social science


by
Stephen A. Germic

Book Details

Format: EPUB

Page count: 160 pages

File size: 833 KB

Protection: DRM

Language: English

In this work of interdisciplinary scholarship, Stephen A. Germic reveals how America’s first parks, both urban and ‘wilderness,’ were created and organized to mitigate the most threatening social and economic crises in the nineteenth century outside of the Civil War. Germic analyzes the intentionally disguised relationship between the constructed ‘nature’ of Central Park, Yosemite, and Yellowstone and the expanding but crisis-prone capitalist state. American Green demonstrates how the fundamental function of these parks was economic and political-in the service of maintaining a consensus regarding national identity. The organization and control of ‘natural’ space, Germic argues, is inseparable from its function as a capitalist instrument. This instrumentalism served not only to define, constitute, and segregate social groups, but also to promote racial and ethnic identifications above those based on class interest. Providing a fresh insight into United States labor, cultural and environmental history, this book is an important contribution to our understanding of American parks and the complex meaning of American public space.

In this work of interdisciplinary scholarship, Stephen A. Germic reveals how America’s first parks, both urban and ‘wilderness,’ were created and organized to mitigate the most threatening social and economic crises in the nineteenth century outside of the Civil War. Germic analyzes the intentionally disguised relationship between the constructed ‘nature’ of Central Park, Yosemite, and Yellowstone and the expanding but crisis-prone capitalist state. American Green… (more)

In this work of interdisciplinary scholarship, Stephen A. Germic reveals how America’s first parks, both urban and ‘wilderness,’ were created and organized to mitigate the most threatening social and economic crises in the nineteenth century outside of the Civil War. Germic analyzes the intentionally disguised relationship between the constructed ‘nature’ of Central Park, Yosemite, and Yellowstone and the expanding but crisis-prone capitalist state. American Green demonstrates how the fundamental function of these parks was economic and political-in the service of maintaining a consensus regarding national identity. The organization and control of ‘natural’ space, Germic argues, is inseparable from its function as a capitalist instrument. This instrumentalism served not only to define, constitute, and segregate social groups, but also to promote racial and ethnic identifications above those based on class interest. Providing a fresh insight into United States labor, cultural and environmental history, this book is an important contribution to our understanding of American parks and the complex meaning of American public space.

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