Date of this Version
The terms region and regionalism carry various meanings, so the book's emphasis is not conveyed by just the title. Unfortunately this confusion persists, even after reading the book. ... Nevertheless, the text is written clearly (in British English), the maps are pertinent, the index is helpful, and the various subtopics (see below) are presented succinctly.
After reviewing some familiar regionalizations of United States (e.g., the Census divisions, Trewartha's climatic regions, Zelinsky'S cultural area, and ones in regional geography textbooks), the author does a nice job of describing the historical conditions that produced regional differences within the United States. Also cultural geographers will appreciate the contrasts he draws between "the Frostbelt vs. the Sunbelt" and "the East vs. the West." One chapter summarizes factors that lead to greater homogeneity within the United States since World War II; another reviews the distribution of poverty, both across large rural areas and within small urban districts. In greater detail, he focuses on the history, functional relationships, and future prospects of the Tennessee Valley Authority, the Appalachian Regional Commission, and other governmentally defined planning regions. He concludes with a plea for more "regional studies" and their application to public policy.