Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

Fall 2006


Published in GREAT PLAINS RESEARCH 16:2 (Fall 2006). Copyright © 2006 Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska–Lincoln.


In this short but suggestive study, sociologist Rod Bantjes examines how contending visions of modernity shaped the social and physical landscapes of the Canadian prairies. "[B]oth statesmen and prairie farmers were infused with the modernist spirit of innovation, the will creatively (and destructively) to transform their worlds," Bantjes argues. His provocative view of farmers as agents of modernity reflects recent scholarship that seeks to explore "multiple modernities," or the notion that ideas and practices of modernism must be regarded not as monolithic but rather as contested and multivocal, and must be examined in their historical and geographical contexts.