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From the Publisher"Finally, a book about the history of the American middle class that is attentive to the way Americans actually used–and fought over–the term "middle class"! Samuel elegantly synthesizes the history of the United States from World War II to the present through arguably its most important lens. His book is especially valuable in its careful treatment of the black middle class."
– Robert D. Johnston, author of The Radical Middle Class
"In this provocative history, Lawrence Samuel traces the decline of the middle class from its pinnacle as the shining star of post-World War II America to its beleaguered condition today. Placing cultural and political developments at the center of his analysis, Samuel shows how we got into this dire situation, and how we might get out of it."
– Elaine Tyler May, author of Homeward Bound: American Families in the Cold War Era
"The middle class is as American as apple pie. What is so surprising, then, is how little we actually know these people, their hearts and minds, their culture and myths. That is until now. Lawrence R. Samuel’s at once brisk and broad cultural reinterpretation of postwar America charts the rise and fall of the great American middle and why their story is important to our own times."
– Bryant Simon, author of Everything but the Coffee: Learning about America from Starbucks