Item description for Wye Island: Insiders, Outsiders, and Change in a Chesapeake Community (Rff Press) by Boyd Gibbons...
Today, most of the 2,800 tranquil acres that make up Wye Island are managed by the Department of Natural Resources of the Maryland Park Service. However, from 1973 to 1974, this island was the site of a raging controversy. A major developer, James Rouse, wanted to build a compact waterfront village that would be surrounded by large estates, protected farms, and wetlands. A boyhood resident of nearby Easton, Maryland, Rouse hoped that the island could avoid the sprawl of unplanned subdivisions that were marring so many other places along the Eastern Shore.
Combining history, journalism, character sketches, and sharp sociological insights, Boyd Gibbons presents both sides of the struggle. Though the book deserves new attention for its example of the environmental activism that began to emerge in the 1960s and early 1970s, Gibbons is clear in revealing that not all of the opposition to Rouse was based on conservationist values. For one thing, residents were protesting a plan that many people today would regard as progressive and as a model for "smart growth." Many of the opponents were no more favorably disposed to a park than to a village. Their interest was in protecting their very private views of the water -- and their independence from the racial and ethnic diversity that might come with new migrants from Baltimore and Washington. In fact, rich landowners, poor "natives," and many recent newcomers opposed the Rouse project, distrusting change and, above all, fearing the onslaught of "outsiders."
The special reprint of Wye Island includes a new foreword by distinguished environmental historian Adam Rome, who explores the book's enduring themes in the context of current debates about land use, development, and sprawl.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.4" Width: 6" Height: 0.8" Weight: 1.15 lbs.
Release Date Aug 1, 2007
Publisher RFF Press
ISBN 1933115424 ISBN13 9781933115429
Availability 0 units.
More About Boyd Gibbons
Boyd Gibbons was president of the Johnson Foundation from 1997 to 2006. He was formerly the director of the California Department of Fish and Game, a senior journalist for National Geographic, secretary to the President's Council on Environmental Quality, and deputy undersecretary of the Interior in the Nixon administration. The American Library Association named Wye Island one of the Ten Most Notable Books in 1977. Adam Rome is associate professor of American history at Pennsylvania State University. He is the author of The Bulldozer in the Countryside: Suburban Sprawl and the Rise of American Environmentalism.