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Environmental Values

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

Brian C. Campbell

Environmental Values 25 (2016): 145-166. doi: 10.3197/096327116X14552114338783

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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.


Agrarian, Arcadia, back-to-the-land, homestead, Ozarks

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Negotiating the Value of Values. Piers H.G. Stephens

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