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In Search of Arcadia: Agrarian Values and the Homesteading Tradition in the Ozarks, USA

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The Ozark Highlands’ karst topography of caves and hollows has provided refuge and escape for myriad peoples seeking to evade mainstream society throughout history, ranging from displaced Native Americans to counter-cultural back-to-the-landers. This ethnographic and ethnohistorical research moves beyond the popular misconception that the back-to-the-land movement merely represented an offshoot of the countercultural revolution of the 1960s and 1970s, and situates it within a deeper historical context. In this paper, I present the Arcadian evocations in various Ozark-related media and how they relate to homesteading in the region, and demonstrate the shared agrarian values among diverse waves of agrarian Ozark homesteaders, recent and historical.
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Keywords: Agrarian; Arcadia; Ozarks; back-to-the-land; homestead

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2016

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  • Environmental Values is an international peer-reviewed journal that brings together contributions from philosophy, economics, politics, sociology, geography, anthropology, ecology and other disciplines, which relate to the present and future environment of human beings and other species. In doing so we aim to clarify the relationship between practical policy issues and more fundamental underlying principles or assumptions.

    Environmental Values has a Journal Impact Factor (2019) of 2.158. 5 Year Impact Factor: 2.047.
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