Into the Backwoods

in Miss Cutler & the Case of the Resurrected Horse

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780226653631
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226653662 | DOI:
Into the Backwoods

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter examines social work in the “backwoods” in Oregon. It highlights the focus on establishing entitlement and policing the state's first child welfare laws and the tendency of child savers and relief agents in implementing removal and institutionalization of clients rather than Americanization. The stories of Oregon caseworkers reveal how the poor and the indigent were considered victims of their heritage rather than of defective social system and how the fear of “bad genes” permeated social welfare, social work, and child protection.

Keywords: social work; backwoods; Oregon; child welfare laws; relief agents; Americanization; heritage; bad genes; social welfare; child protection

Chapter.  4270 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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