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[star] In the first half of the 20th century, America was known internationally for its decisive contribution to two world wars, its Jim Crow laws, and the execution of Sacco and Vanzetti. This most recent study of the trial and appeals of these two condemned murderers and of the life and times of the country, which feared foreign contamination, surpasses all prior analyses of this subject in terms of scope, erudition, and objectivity. Temkin (Kennedy Sch. of Government, Harvard) not only brings light to bear on the most recent historical research but focuses attention on a much-neglected facet of the case: the worldwide controversy the affair still engenders. Built upon a foundation of meticulous research, this book discusses many fascinating elements of controversy, not least the long-term views held by Sacco and Vanzetti's defenders and accusers and how their participation in the search for justice was perceived by their peers. Timely given the contemporary attacks America faces abroad for its policies and justice system, this signal study is worthy reading, especially for students of the era.