We Mapped ‘the Midwest’ for You, So Stop Arguing
2 Sep 2019
We surveyed more than 12,000 people (and counting) about the most contentious border question in the U.S. to reveal the true geography of America’s midsection.
At a time when it can seem Americans have never been more divided, one issue stirs up passions like no other. I speak, of course, of the definition of “the Midwest.”
Delineating that great vast middle of the country—interior but definitely not Southern, west of the Northeast, but not the West—isn’t just a matter of parochial concern to the tens of millions of Americans with ties to the region. It also speaks to an abiding fascination of our current political moment: trying to pin down some romanticized “Heartland.” This term is often invoked to suggest a simpler, more agrarian, and often more virtuous place than whatever else the Midwest is being compared to at any given moment.