Bill Rankin’s 2013 Map of “The Midwest”

A colleague recently tipped me to a Bloomberg Media article about radical cartography, focusing on an interview with Bill Rankin. Before I moved to Michigan from Tennessee, I would never have considered that some people and agencies would consider the latter to be a part of the Midwest. According to Rankin’s aggregate map (below), the region stretches from Ohio to the Rockies, though I don’t know if people who live in the Plains region universally consider their states as “Midwestern.”

In my mind’s eye, I consider Pittsburgh to be the Eastern gate into the Midwest region from Appalachia, which separates the East and Mid-Atlantic from the Midwest and South. Of course, having lived in Syracuse for several years, I consider Western New York to be part of the Midwest, too, and it barely even registers on Rankin’s rendering.

Huh.

Oral History Association Meeting This Week in Minneapolis

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For the first time in six years, this week I’ll be returning to the land of Prince, Mitch Hedberg, The ‘Mats, D4, Hüsker Dü, Extreme Noise, the North Stars Wild, the Juicy Lucy, and so much more. I couldn’t be more excited to be back in a place with (1) temperate weather and (2) stuff that’s actually open on Sundays. North-Country paradise!

This will be my first year attending the national meeting of the Oral History Association, and my first oral history conference in general. I look forward to all of the historians I may meet and the variety of valuable lessons I’ll get to learn in quantitative methods, digital archiving, and anything else in which OHA members specialize. For anyone interested, I’m presenting “Memories of Violence and Punk’s Challenge to Oral History” in a session called ‘Oral History at the Intersection of Place and Culture’ this Thursday at 2:15pm, Conrad B Room in the Hilton Minneapolis, right downtown. Program Link.

Otherwise, I’ll be all over the place per usual, hitting landmarks and buying records. If you’re in the Twin Cities, I would love to see you and catch up.