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Willing to Take a Risk: Working in the Delta

Dictator and definer of the Delta, the Mississippi River provides the fertile flood plain that makes possible the majority of traditional, regional occupations in this predominantly rural area. Now open and flat with blurred timber on the horizon, the Delta landscape with its resources of rich "buckshot" dirt, waterways, timber, and gas features farming- and river-related occupations, which exhibit a complex of techniques, customs, and modes of expressive behavior typical of occupational folklife: raising cotton, soybeans, rice, cattle, and catfish; crop dusting; commercial fishing; lock operations; and riverboat work.

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