The Shaping of America: A Geographical Perspective on 500 Years of History

Volume 4: Global America, 1915–2000

D. W. Meinig

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This landmark book, the concluding volume of D. W. Meinig’s magisterial series The Shaping of America, presents the story of America’s interwoven history and geography from 1915 to 2000. The author describes decades of enormous national growth and change in his characteristic engaging style, and through more than seventy original maps he ingeniously depicts diverse twentieth-century trends and developments.
The book addresses the expanding nation’s progress in terms of the automotive revolution; neotechnic evolution; access to air travel; growth of instantaneous forms of communication, including telephones, television, and the Internet; and such political events as World War II. Meinig relates these developments to social and geographic trends, among them patterns of urban migration, regionalism, metropolitanization, the beginnings of the urban megalopolis, shifts in ethnic and religious populations, and, on a more global scale, transformations in America’s connections with Europe, Asia, and Latin America. A masterful synthesis of twentieth-century history and geography, this book offers unprecedented insights into the shaping and reshaping of the United States over the past century.

D. W. Meinig is Maxwell Research Professor of Geography at Syracuse University.

“This splendid work concludes the most ambitious writing project of any American geographer, ever. Global America meets and even exceeds the high standards set by the previous three volumes. Meinig’s interpretation leads finally to the global scale, which became the essential stage for American ambitions in the second half of the twentieth century.”—John C. Hudson, Northwestern University

"Absolutely stunning. . . . Meinig leaves the reader with a fresh angle on American history."—Books & Culture

 "This work will shape the way many people view the United States for a long time to come. Essential."—Choice



"The Shaping of America will stand for generations as a research and publishing milestone. Its scope is simply breathtaking. . . . There can be no doubt about the superb and sustained scholarship exhibited by The Shaping of America. It is a truly astonishing achievement. . . . Meinig's project is simply stunning in its ambition as well as outstanding in its achievement. Its scope and its completion mark it as one of the most remarkable products of North American geography during the twentieth century."—Alan R.H. Baker, Journal of Historical Geography

"Meinig at his best: he presents a masterly synthesis of the cultural complexity of America, a compelling account of the dramatic but immensely complicated restructuring of its human geography during the twentieth century."—Alan R.H. Baker, Journal of Historical Geography

"One of modern geography's most substantial achievements. . . . The project, taken as a whole and at face value, evokes the same sort of awe as (and many of the superlatives used to describe) the Grand Canyon. . . . The resulting volumes are notable feats of condensation, integration and interpretation. Each rests upon prodigious reading and the intelligent assimilation of arguments new and old advanced by scholars from a number of disciplines. In every volume, indeed it is no exaggeration to say on every page of every volume, Meinig writes with skill and care. . . . There can be no doubt that it is a remarkable achievement, one of the great accomplishments of twentieth century American geography. Meinig can only be admired for the scope of this ambitious project and the consummate skill and dogged resolve with which he brought it to fruition. He has painted a coherent and often compelling picture on a canvas far larger than most geographers have thought to address and which hardly any seem likely to engage in the future."—Graeme Wynn, Journal of Historical Geography

"The book is phenomenally well researched, and one of its strengths is its wealth of fascinating illustrations. . . . Professor Meinig has concluded his magnum opus in fine style."—M.J. Heale, Journal of American Studies

"The author has again succeeded brilliantly in writing a lively narrative interspersed with innovative maps (a great atlas could be created by collating the maps from the four volumes) and historical and contemporary photographs of cultural landscapes and symbolic sights."—Bruce Bigelow, Indiana Magazine of History

D. W. Meinig is the recipient of the Association of American Geographers Presidential Achievement Award

"Generously illustrated, clearly written, and methodologically sound, the book should fund a place in most libraries and will serve students of the United States for many years to come. . . . This is a text that deserves wide circulation and one that compels others to heed its warnings about excluding geography."—David Blanke, The Annals of Iowa

Winner of the Charles P. Daly medal given by the American Geographical Society

Winner of the 2005 John Brinckerhoff Jackson Prize sponsored by the Association of American Geographers

Selected as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2006 by Choice Magazine
ISBN: 9780300104325
Publication Date: October 11, 2004
488 pages, 7 x 10
94 b/w illus.
The Shaping of America

A Geographical Perspective on 500 Years of History, Volume 1: Atlantic America 1492-1800

D. W. Meinig

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The Shaping of America: A Geographical Perspective on 500 Years of History

Volume 3: Transcontinental America, 1850–1915

D. W. Meinig

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The Shaping of America: A Geographical Perspective on 500 Years of History

Volume 2: Continental America, 1800–1867

D. W. Meinig

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