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Celebrating the History of Appalachia

The birthplace of entertainers (Lucille Ball), musicians (Patsy Cline) authors (Cormac McCarthy) and scholars (Henry Louis Gates Jr.), Appalachia offers a rich slice of American history. But it is often steeped in mythic lore and stereotyped as backward, uncultured and poor.

Two new books seek to change these perceptions. The United States of Appalachia, by Jeff Biggers, and The Encyclopedia of Appalachia, co-edited by Rudy Abramson and Jean Haskell, both try to get past the negative associations and bring the historical and cultural achievements of the region to the foreground.

Biggers and Abramson join Howard Berkes for a discussion of an underappreciated region.

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