POCKETS OF HOPE by Martha Munzer


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Inspired by the resurgence of Wilkes-Barre, a town she had known at its worst, Mrs. Munzer sought out other communities successfully pulling themselves up by their own bootstraps. Here, then, is the result of her investigations and travels, six widely separated places where the combination of federal funds, expertise and local initiative is overcoming economic stagnation and/or overexploitation of resources: the Wyoming Valley of northeastern Pennsylvania--anthracite reclaimed and diversification introduced; the pueblo of Santa Clara in New Mexico, representative of American Indian problems generally; the upper peninsula of Michigan--iron, forests and fish coming back through sound management; Alaska, last chance to do things a better way. Each of these--especially the Indian example--has importance beyond its borders, but the most telling is the smallest: Johnson Creek Watershed in west Tennessee where Negroes and whites are working together in what could mean a quiet revolution for the rural South (and talking about their aspirations with a directness that makes most of the other interviews sound canned). Like the author's previous book on planning, this may be more respected than read, a fate librarians can forestall if they keep in mind its ancillary uses--it's a good source for the economic history of industries and regions, a good summary of U.S. Indian policy.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1967
Publisher: Knopf