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Science And Nature

These Americans stepped around help contain the country together

Published August 9, 2022

45 min read

They’re the glue that holds communities together, upgrading to aid their neighbors in times of crisis, need, along with other challenges. Some are volunteers whose projects uplift their neighborhoods; others work to preserve their communitys culture. Still others are Good Samaritans who help older residents get basic necessities, or assist those displaced by disaster. And on and on.

Throughout U.S. history, such altruists have stitched a feeling of unity amongst their neighbors. Nearly 190 years back, in his book Democracy in the us,the French political philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville was impressed by just how much of life in the young nation revolved around community-based leaders and groups. He saw them as local democracies that set social mores and helped defend against tyranny.

In the past five years, National Geographic journalists traveled over the USA to observe how the ideas Tocqueville described are supporting in a country that may seem inexorably divided by race, income, politics, and religion. They visited health workers, farmers, coal miners, students, and much more to recognize a sampling of these that are sewing the threads of community in todays America.

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