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Despite growing interest in urbanization and its social and ecological impacts on formerly rural areas, empirical research remains limited. Extant studies largely focus either on issues of social exclusion and enclosure or ecological change. This article uses the case of sweetgrass basketmaking in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, to explore the implications of urbanization, including gentrification, for the distribution and accessibility of sweetgrass, an economically important nontimber forest product (NTFP) for historically African American communities, in this rapidly growing area. We explore the usefulness of grounded visualization for research efforts that are examining the existence of "fringe ecologies" associated with NTFP. Our findings highlight the importance of integrated qualitative and quantitative analyses for revealing the complex social and ecological changes that accompany both urbanization and rural gentrification.


The item available for download here is the version of record originally published in Professional Geographer, Volume 60, Issue 4, pp 1-23.

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This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.