ABOUT THIS BOOK
Bridging the Distance examines a number of the problems and prospects of the rural West that have largely been neglected by scholars. The issues are considered in four sections—Defining the Rural West, Community, Economy, and Land Use—each with an introduction by editor David Danbom. The essays highlight factors that set the region apart from the rest of the country and provide varied perspectives on challenges faced by those living in often isolated areas. Contributors cover matters such as a hazing incident that divided a small Colorado town and the effects of media coverage; challenges in areas of Montana and Wyoming where the ideas of new exurbanites regarding natural resources differ from those of long-time residents; conflict between surface water and ground water users in Colorado, Kansas, and Nebraska; and the shortcomings of health care among Latino immigrants in rural California. Essays on rural economy suggest how states can better use fiscal policies to advance long-term economic health and how resources can be exploited in ways that are both environmentally and economically sustainable. On the question of land use, one essay shares the viewpoint of a ranching family in Nevada that has long struggled with the government over grazing cattle on federal lands. Another examines the case of the Goshute Indians of Skull Valley, whose efforts to use their reservation for nuclear waste storage roused the ire of the state of Utah.
The essays in Bridging the Distance are fresh, informative, and insightful examinations of the complex problems facing the rural West. This is a book that will spur both conversations and the search for solutions.