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May 22, 2003
9780801877025
English
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v2.1 Reference

The Rise of the States

Evolution of American State Government

In The Rise of the States, noted urban historian Jon C. Teaford explores the development of state government in the United States from the end of the nineteenth century to the so-called renaissance of states at the end of the twentieth. Arguing that state governments were not lethargic backwaters that suddenly stirred to life in the 1980s, Teaford shows instead how state governments were continually adapting and expanding throughout the past century. While previous historical scholarship focused on the states, if at all, as retrograde relics of simpler times, Teaford describes how states actively assumed new responsibilities, developed new sources of revenue, and created new institutions.

Teaford examines the evolution of the structure, function, and finances of state government during the Progressive Era, the 1920s, the Great Depression, the post–World War II years, and the post–reapportionment era beginning in the late 1960s. State governments, he explains, played an active role not only in the creation, governance, and management of the political units that made up the state but also in dealing with the growth of business, industries, and education. Not all states chose the same solutions to common problems. For Teaford, the diversity of responses points to the growing vitality and maturity of state governments as the twentieth century unfolded.

About the Author

Jon C. Teaford is a professor of history at Purdue University. His many books include Post-Suburbia: Government and Politics in the Edge Cities, The Twentieth-Century American City: Problem, Promise, and Reality, and The Rough Road to Renaissance: Urban Revitalization in America, 1940-1985, all published by Johns Hopkins.

Reviews

"This very thoughtful volume details the institutional restructuring, refinancing, and rethinking of the purposes of state government. A solid chronicle of the evolution of state government in the US."—Choice

"Teaford, a respected urban historian, turns his attention to the history of state government and provides a long overdue framework for debate. One can only hope that this book will find as wide an audience among historians as it deserves . . . The value of The Rise of States is that it presents a bold argument for the aiding strength of state government in the federal system."—Rebecca Conard, Annals of Iowa

"Efficiency, rationality, and 'scientific management' were leitmotifs of the twentieth century from its start, and the states, Teaford argues, were better positioned than the fettered giant in Washington to partake of the experimental spirit of the age . . . Teaford commendably serves a calming role for the caricature-prone conversation over the states' place within American governance."—John D. Donahue, American Historical Review

"State governments, in Teaford's account, were resilient and entrepreneurial regimes throughout the twentieth century . . . An outstanding book. For years to come, it will surely be a standard reference and starting point for those seeking to understand the history of state government."—Gerald Gamm, Journal of American History

9780801877025 : the-rise-of-the-states-teaford
Electronic book text
280 Pages
$23.95 USD

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