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"The Awkward State of Utah" on Tuesdays Access Utah


During its sometimes awkward years of adolescence and maturation, Utah was gradually incorporated into the American political, social, and economic mainstream. Urban and industrial influences supplanted agrarian traditions, displacing people socially, draining the countryside of population, and galvanizing a critical crisis in values and self-identification. National corporations and mass labor movements took root in the state as commerce expanded. Involvement in world events such as the Spanish-American War, two world wars, and the Great Depression further set the stage for entry into the modern, globalized world as Utahns immersed themselves in national politics and became part of the democratic, corporate culture of twentieth-century America.

On Tuesday's Access Utah, we visit with co-author Brian Cannon.

Brian Q. Cannon is a professor of history and director of the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies at Brigham Young University. He is the author of numerous books, including Reopening the Frontier: Homesteading in the Modern West, and coeditor, with Jessie L. Embry, of Utah in the Twentieth Century and Immigrants in the Far West: Historical Identities and Experiences (University of Utah Press, 2015).

Charles S. "Chas" Peterson is Professor Emeritus of History at Utah State University. His publications include Take Up Your Mission: Mormon Colonizing along the Little Colorado River, 1870–1900 and Utah: A Bicentennial History.


Tom Williams worked as a part-time UPR announcer for a few years and joined Utah Public Radio full-time in 1996. He is a proud graduate of Uintah High School in Vernal and Utah State University (B. A. in Liberal Arts and Master of Business Administration.) He grew up in a family that regularly discussed everything from opera to religion to politics. He is interested in just about everything and loves to engage people in conversation, so you could say he has found the perfect job as host “Access Utah.” He and his wife Becky, live in Logan.