What's the Matter With Kansas? | Chicago Reader

What's the Matter With Kansas?

Entertaining and eye-opening, this documentary based on Thomas Frank's best-selling book investigates how voters in the Jayhawk State switched from the left to the right. Once home to the socialist newspaper Appeal to Reason, Kansas was long a fountain of populism; ironically, such sentiments as reverence for the working man and distrust of government and corporations were subverted by the 1980s conservative backlash. Without passing judgment, director Joe Winston follows several fascinating subjects, including right-wing Baptist minister Terry Fox as he exhorts his congregation to go to the polls, then loses his job; a Republican family whose children are home-schooled to believe in creationism; and an activist who lobbies for cash-strapped small farmers. 90 min.

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