Region from Below: drifting in Southern Illinois

A Region from below is a landscape of energy hidden from view. With Compass, we examined this idea in a drift through Southern Illinois. The metaphor of a territory buried underneath, with perhaps insurgent potential is fitting for how Southern Illinois is like Chicago’s back 40, not only at the ‘bottom’ of the state, but also layered in time, for much of the physical power and materials, particularly coal, that helped build Chicago into an economic powerhouse were pulled out of this ground. Southern Illinois has been serially plundered since the early 1800s, starting with salt, then oil, coal, oil and more oil and now gas through high pressure deep well hydrofracking. More on Region from below: drifting in Southern Illinois at Compass in the Midwest Cultural Corridor