Thursday, June 28, 2018

New Book: For-Profit Democracy: Why the Government is Losing the Trust of Rural America

Loka Ashwood's first book has just been published by Yale University Press's Agrarian series.  A description follows:
A fascinating sociological assessment of the damaging effects of the for-profit partnership between government and corporation on rural Americans
Why is government distrust rampant, especially in the rural United States? This book offers a simple explanation: corporations and the government together dispossess rural people of their prosperity, and even their property. Based on four years of fieldwork, this eye-opening assessment by sociologist Loka Ashwood plays out in a mixed-race Georgia community that hosted the first nuclear power reactors sanctioned by the government in three decades. This work serves as an explanatory mirror of prominent trends in current American politics. Churches become havens for redemption, poaching a means of retribution, guns a tool of self-defense, and nuclear power a faltering solution to global warming as governance strays from democratic principles. In the absence of hope or trust in rulers, rural racial tensions fester and divide. The book tells of the rebellion that unfolds as the rights of corporations supersede the rights of humans.
I reviewed the book and have a blurb on the jacket cover:
Loka Ashwood turns the conventional story of American reverence for private property on its head by revealing ways in which property rights are undermined when they conflict with the interests of the 'corporate-state,' an increasingly present and powerful player in the neoliberal era.
John Gaventa and David Pellow also endorse the book.
Ashwood is a rural sociologist at Auburn University

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