Writer and Lecturer

Nancy Diggs’ interest in cultures has taken her around the globe—and down the road to Appalachia. Scroll down to learn more about her writings.

About the Author

Books by Nancy Brown Diggs

In the Media


In Search of Appalachia

“In an era when the truth about everything is crucially needed, author Nancy Diggs unveils the true soul of Appalachia, a region commonly depicted by stereotypes of poverty, ignorance, and violence. From coal mines to mountain churches to dance halls of country music, Diggs explores it all, sculpting new images as she introduces her readers to strong, creative, hardworking folks—many having survived tough times through their music, religion, and sheer strength gained from hardscrabble pasts. Unearthing such gems from a terrain of misconceptions, Diggs’ spirited In Search of Appalachia brings to life what Walt Whitman claimed in Leaves of Grass, as Diggs writes, “The best of America lies in its common people.” This excellently researched book will help to fulfill its author’s greatest hope: that Appalachia “be met with the celebration it deserves.”

Ann Hagedorn, award-winning author of Wild Ride, Ransom, Beyond the River, Savage Peace, and The Invisible Soldiers

In Search of Appalachia

“This is a must read for those interested in Appalachian culture’s historical development, social values, music, religion, and social problems. Written for a general or academic audience, or as a supplement to courses in history, sociology, or other social sciences, the book adds to the narratives of Ken Burns’ forthcoming Country Music, David McCollough’s The Pioneers, J.D. Vance’s Hillbilly Elegy. It’s a page turner!”

Jeanne Ballantine, professor of sociology, Wright State University, and author of The Sociology of Education

In Search of Appalachia

“[Chapter One: The Backstory] bounces between different viewpoints seamlessly, meaning the reader can be educated on the historical and scientific significance of a particular site without the transitions feeling jarring. Diggs is also good at applying perspective to major historical events surrounding Appalachia, such as how the discovery of copper and gold ended up becoming a burden on the communities that discovered it.”

Mike Martella, “In Search of Appalachia is a Must-Read,” GoNomad (e-zine), May 22, 2020

In Search of Appalachia

Listen to the Cincinnati Public Radio book review.

Roberta Schultz on WVXU, May 29, 2020

Contact Nancy

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