This introductory chapter sheds light on mountaintop removal coal mining and the ways people have reacted to it, including reimagining profound social and personal ideas like identity, history, and landscape. From a different perspective, it looks at the social processes that help create and continue to justify a monster like mountaintop removal, and about the social resources communities assemble to combat those processes. Conflicts of this sort are often associated with globalization. The chapter reveals how people experience in their daily lives the local effects of global processes. In their opposition to mountaintop removal and other coal industry practices, citizen activists narrate a revised version of local and regional history, in order to situate themselves and their position in relation to the black rock and its industry that had fed them for generations.
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