Divided Highways: Building The Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life by Tom LewisDivided Highways: Building The Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life by Tom Lewis

Divided Highways: Building The Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life

byTom Lewis

Paperback | May 21, 2013

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In Divided Highways, Tom Lewis offers an encompassing account of highway development in the United States. In the early twentieth century Congress created the Bureau of Public Roads to improve roads and the lives of rural Americans. The Bureau was the forerunner of the Interstate Highway System of 1956, which promoted a technocratic approach to modern road building sometimes at the expense of individual lives, regional characteristics, and the landscape. With thoughtful analysis and engaging prose Lewis charts the development of the Interstate system, including the demographic and economic pressures that influenced its planning and construction and the disputes that pitted individuals and local communities against engineers and federal administrators.

This is a story of America's hopes for its future life and the realities of its present condition. It is an engaging history of the people and policies that profoundly transformed the American landscape—and the daily lives of Americans. In this updated edition of Divided Highways, Lewis brings his story of the Interstate system up to date, concluding with Boston's troubled and yet triumphant Big Dig project, the growing antipathy for big federal infrastructure projects, and the uncertain economics of highway projects both present and future.

Tom Lewis is Professor of English at Skidmore College. He is the author of Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio and The Hudson: A History, as well as researcher, writer, or producer for documentary films including Brooklyn Bridge, The Shakers, and Empire of the Air (all directed by Ken Burns) and Divided Highways (directed by La...
Title:Divided Highways: Building The Interstate Highways, Transforming American LifeFormat:PaperbackDimensions:416 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.27 inPublished:May 21, 2013Publisher:CORNELL UNIVERSITY PRESSLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0801478227

ISBN - 13:9780801478222

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Table of Contents

Preface to the Cornell Edition


Part 1
1. The Chief
2. Mastering Nature
3. The Dreamway
4. The GI and the General

Part 2
5. A Grand Plan
6. The Great Puzzle
7. Lines of Desire

Part 3
8. Revolt
9. Busting the Trust
10. New Rules
11. Continental Drift
12. The Greatest of Improvements

Sources and Notes
Selected Bibliography
Supplemental Bibliography to the Cornell Edition

Editorial Reviews

"Tom Lewis is a very talented and engaging writer, and the tale he tells—the vision for the Interstates, Congressional battles, construction, and the impact of new highways on American life—is important to understanding the shape of the contemporary American landscape."—David Schuyler, Arthur and Katherine Shadek Professor of the Humanities and American Studies at Franklin & Marshall College, author of Sanctified Landscape: Writers, Artists, and the Hudson River Valley, 1820–1909