A Companion to Post-1945 America / Edition 1

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A Companion to Post-1945 America is an original collection of 34 essays by key scholars on the history and historiography of Post-1945 America.
  • Covers society and culture, people and movements, politics and foreign policy
  • Surveys and evaluates the best scholarship on every important era and topic
  • Includes book review section on essential readings
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“These 34 valuable essays review the current state of historical research on a wide range of issues and contribute to the scholarly study of US history following World War II. The issues reflect the diverse directions that historical inquiry has recently taken … This book will help define the new historiography: highly recommended.” Choice

“This is a gem of a book that will fascinate anyone whose interest in recent US history goes beyond nostalgia and personalities. Broad enough to cover both tourism and the Cold War, it will quickly become required reading for scholars of the period.” Michael Kazin, Georgetown University and co-author, America Divided: The Civil War of the 1960s

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Jean-Christophe Agnew is Professor of American Studies and History at Yale University. He is the author of Worlds Apart: The Market and the Theater in Anglo-American Thought (1989) and of a number of articles on the history of market society and consumer culture.

Roy Rosenzweig is College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor of History and director of the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. He is the author, co-author, and co-editor of a number of books, including The Presence of the Past: Popular Uses of History in American Life (1998), which won the Historic Preservation Book Prize for Best Book of 1998.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations.

About the Contributors.

Introduction (Jean-Christophe Agnew, Yale University and Roy Rosenzweig, George Mason University).


1. Family and Demography in Postwar America: A Hazard of New Fortunes? (Stephen Lassonde, Yale University).

2. The Power of Place: Race, Political Economy, and Identity in the Postwar Metropolis (Robert O. Self, Brown University and Thomas J. Sugrue, University of Pennsylvania).

3. American Religion Since 1945 (James T. Fisher).

4. Time Out: Leisure and Tourism (Susan G. Davis, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign).

5. Mass Media: From 1945 to the Present (Susan J. Douglas, University of Michigan).

6. What the Traffic Bares: Popular Music "Back in the U. S. A." (Allen Tullos, Emory University).

7. The Visual Arts in Post-1945 America (Erika Doss, University of Colorado).

8. American Intellectual History and Social Thought Since 1945 (Patrick N. Allitt, University of California, Berkeley).


9. American Political Culture since 1945 (Richard H. King, Vanderbilt University).

10. Hyphen Nation: Ethnicity in American Intellectual and Political Life (Matthew Frye Jacobson, Yale University).

11. Labor During the American Century: Work, Workers, and Unions since 1945 (Joshua B. Freeman, City University of New York).

12. The Historiography of the Struggle for Black Equality since 1945 (Kevin Gaines, University of Michigan).

13. Postwar Women’s History: The "Second Wave" or the End of the Family Wage? (Nancy MacLean, Northwestern University).

14. Sexuality and the Movements for Sexual Liberation (Beth Bailey, Temple University).

15. A Movement of Movements: The Definition and Periodization of the New Left (Van Gosse, Franklin and Marshall).

16. The Triumph of Conservatives in a Liberal Age (David L. Chappell, University of Arkansas).

17. Modern Environmentalism (Ian Tyrell, The University of New South Wales).


18. Beyond the Presidential Synthesis: Reordering Political Time (Julian E. Zelizer, State University of New York).

19. McCarthyism and the Red Scare (Ellen Schrecker, Yeshiva University).

20. The Politics of "The Least Dangerous Branch": The Court, the Constitution, and Constitutional Politics Since 1945 (Mary L. Dudziak, University of Southern California).

21. The Cold War in Europe (Carolyn Eisenberg, Hofstra University).

22. Off the Beach: The United States, Latin America, and the Cold War (Greg Grandin, New York University).

23. The United States and East Asia in the Postwar Era (James I. Matray, New Mexico State University).

24. Washington Quagmire: US Presidents and the Vietnam Wars - A Pattern of Intervention (David Hunt, University of Massachusetts Boston).

25. The End of the Cold War (David S. Painter, Georgetown University and Thomas S. Blanton, George Washington University).

26. From the "Atomic Age" to the "Anti-Nuclear Age": Nuclear Energy in Politics, Diplomacy, and Culture (J. Samuel Walker, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission).


27. J. Anthony Lukas, Common Ground: A Turbulent Decade in the Lives of Three American Families (1985) (Alan Brinkley, Columbia University).

28. Charles Payne, I’ve Got the Light of Freedom (1995) (Linda Gordon, New York University).

29. Samuel Lubell, The Future of American Politics (1952, 1956, 1965) (Nelson Lichtenstein, University of California at Santa Barbara).

30. Stephanie Coontz, The Way We Never Were (1992) (Elaine Tyler May, University of Minnesota).

31. Alphonso Pinkney, The Myth of Black Progress (1984) (Robert E. Weems, Jr., University of Missouri-Columbia).

32. Gary Wills, Nixon Agonistes: The Crisis of the Self-Made Man (1970) (Robert Westbrook, University of Rochester).

33. Victor Navasky, Naming Names (1980) (Jon Wiener, University of California Irvine).

34. Edward Said, Orientalism (1979) (Melani McAlister, George Washington University).


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