Sunday, July 27, 2008

Third Coast Diaspora

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reviews a book searching for the heart of Northern culture:

McClelland seems least entranced by Lake Erie. Buffalo, he declares, leads the Midwest in the rust-belt death cycle. Erie is painted as a tired, dreary repository for Big Lots stores and chain restaurants. Detroit's highlight is Heidelberg Street in the ghetto known as Black Bottom, "the poorest neighborhood in the poorest city in the United States."

If you haven't guessed, "Third Coast" is about the Great Lakes cultural region, with Lake Erie serving as the backwater. I'm not interested in retorting with a list of Rust Belt charms located in the hearth of my own identity. My rationale for posting about the book review is how Lake Erie is a unique place that could serve as the foundation for economic collaboration.

Or, how about America's Slovak Heartland? Pirohi Diaspora?

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