Dust Bowl

Depression America to World War Two Australia

  • Janette-Susan Bailey

Part of the Palgrave Studies in World Environmental History book series (PSWEH)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxii
  2. Janette-Susan Bailey
    Pages 1-23
  3. New Deal Era Storytelling: A Rich Blend of Ideas that Converged in US Dust Bowl Imagery

  4. Soil and the US Dust Bowl: American Imagery Converges with the Australian

  5. Water and “Dust Bowls”: American Imagery Converges with the Australian

  6. Back Matter
    Pages 291-353

About this book


This book takes the Dust Bowl story beyond Depression America to describe the ‘dust bowl’ concept as a transnational phenomenon, where during World War Two, US and Australian national mythologies converged. Dust Bowl begins with Depression America, the New Deal and the US Dust Bowl where massive dust storms darkened the skies of the Great Plains and triggered a major national and international media event and generated imagery describing a failed yeoman dream, Dust Bowl refugees, and the coming of a new American Desert. Dust Bowl traces the evolution of this imagery to Australia, World War Two and New Deal-inspired stories of conservation-mindedness, soil erosion and enemies, sheep-farmers and traitors, creeping deserts and human extinction, super-human housewives and natural disaster and finally, grand visions of a nation-building post-war scheme for Australia’s iconic Snowy River‒that vision became the Snowy Mountains Hydro-electric Scheme. 


New Deal World War II Snowy Mountains Scheme desert myth Franklin D. Roosevelt US Great Plains irrigation myth sheep myth Australian National Film Board Depression

Authors and affiliations

  • Janette-Susan Bailey
    • 1
  1. 1.University of South WalesPontypriddUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, New York
  • eBook Packages History History (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-1-137-58049-8
  • Online ISBN 978-1-137-58907-1
  • Buy this book on publisher's site