Bakken Goes Boom Press Release and First Weekend Data

The newest publication from The Digital Press, The Bakken Goes Boom: Oil and the Changing Geographies in Western North Dakota was released quietly on Friday and propagated through social media outlets. We had about 800 page views over the last few days at The Digital Press website from about 450 unique visitors. These resulted in just under 200 downloads of the book.  We updated the book slightly on Sunday morning when we received our LCCN number and caught another round of little niggling proofreading errors. 

This week, we’ll slowly ramp up publicity beginning with a press release:

The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota announces the publication of the first, peer-reviewed, book-length collection of studies on the Bakken oil boom in Western North Dakota: The Bakken Goes Boom: Oil and the Changing Geographies of Western North Dakota edited by William Caraher (History, UND) and Kyle Conway (Communications, University of Ottawa)

The book brings together a substantial range of scholarly and creative contributions to consider the impact of the Bakken Boom on history and healthcare, the natural and man-made environment, the media and art. Poetry, photography, and essays rub shoulders with scholarly articles to communicate and document the challenges of the 21st century Bakken boom.

Kyle Conway, the co-editor of the volume, reinforces the point: “The neat thing about this book is that it’s not just academics talking to each other. It’s journalists, poets, and artists, too. Art and poetry hold can open up a different world for us, which is why everyone whose life is affect by oil — and that means everyone, not just North Dakotans — should read this book.”

The book features contributions from national and local authors who each offer distinct visions of the challenges and opportunities of the Bakken oil boom in the context of both Western North Dakota and the world. Some of the articles present cutting-edge research from a graduate seminar in rural communication in the Communications Program at the University of North Dakota. Others offer insights into recent completed or ongoing research projects including exploratory “adventure science” in the North Dakota Badlands, work by the North Dakota Man Camp Project to document workforce housing conditions, ethnographic work on the Ft. Berthold Indian Reservation, and the definitive catalogue of the Plains Art Museum’s Bakken Boom! exhibit from 2015.

William Caraher (Department of History, UND) adds: “We hope this book does more than just provide a first reaction to the Bakken Boom, but also serves as a kind of historical document that will help future generations in both North Dakotans and elsewhere see how folks understood the experiences and challenges of the 21st-century Bakken Boom.”

The book is available as free, color, digital download from TheDigitalPress.org and will be released on paper at the end of the month.

Book Blurb

The Bakken Goes Boom: Oil and the Changing Geographies of Western North Dakota

Edited by William Caraher and Kyle Conway

With contributions from Carenlee Barkdull, Karin L. Becker, Sebastian Braun, Nikki Berg Burin, Angela Cary, Kyle Cassidy, Heidi Czerwiec, Simon Donato, Rebecca A. Dunham, Julia C. Geigle, John Holmgren, Heather Jackson, Ann Reed, Andrew Reinhard, Richard Rothaus, Melissa Rae Stewart, Jessica Sobolik, Laura Tally, Ryan M. Taylor, Bret A. Weber, Joshua E. Young

In 2008, the Bakken went boom. Thanks to advances in hydraulic fracturing, oil production in western North Dakota exploded. As the price of oil went up, so did the oil rigs. People came from all over the country (and the world) in search of work, and cities and towns struggled to keep up. This book is about the challenges they faced. It is about the human dimensions of the boom, as told by artists, poets, journalists, and scholars. It captures the boom at its peak, before the price of oil fell and the boom went bust.

This is the only book on the Bakken to bring together such a wide range of voices. It captures a fascinating moment in the history not only of North Dakota, but of global oil production. It sheds light on the impact of oil on local communities that, until now, had not attracted much interest from the outside world. And it shows how North Dakotans, both old and new, have found ways to address the challenges they face in a turbulent, changing environment.

The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota

The Digital Press at the University of North Dakota publishes high quality peer-reviewed and popular books. It uses digital and print-on-demand technologies to publish timely works in the digital humanities, broadly conceived. Whenever possible, we produce open access, digital publications, that can attract local and global audiences.

The Digital Press uses a cooperative model for publishing in which authors, editors, and designers work closely together to bring a book to publication. The publication process is as transparent as possible to build awareness of the publication, and social and new media platforms engages audiences with the publication process, and serves to market the final product.

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