Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

CONTENTS

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pp. vii-viii

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FOREWORD

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pp. ix-xii

...By any measure the United States is a stupendously successful nation. Its citizens have been blessed with vast natural resources, renewed by waves of diverse and energetic immigration, guarded by two great oceans, and fortunate in the size and dynamism of their domestic marketplace. It is fair to say they have made the most...

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ACKNOWLEDGMENT

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pp. xiii-xvi

...duck swim”? This exchange led to a commission to write the book as a report for the foundation, with the idea that it would find a trade publisher for it. My gratitude therefore goes in the first place to Richard C. Leone, president of The Century Foundation, and to his colleagues, especially Leif Wellington Haase, Beverly...

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INTRODUCTION: Disappointment and Denial

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...This book is an attempt to understand what has happened in the United States over the last quarter of the twentieth century. More specifically, it is an attempt to say some things that—I think—need to be said because they are not part of either of the two ruling narratives, the liberal recessional or conservative triumphalism...

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1 State of the Union

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pp. 1-28

...and uncertain. For the first time in the modern era, the nation had lost a war. For the first time, a president had been driven from office in disgrace. It was said that the American Dream would be denied to many, because for the first time a generation of Americans would be worse off than their parents. For the first time...

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2 New Politics

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pp. 29-60

...unintended consequences. There is no such law, of course. They meant simply that you could argue against any proposal for government action, and they disapproved of most on principle, by suggesting that no one could be sure what its consequences would be. The logic is fallacious. But it is certainly...

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3 New Technology

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pp. 61-86

...turn would make possible a new politics and a new society. That was the dream that inspired President Clinton and many others as the old century ended and a new millennium began. To be sure, such idealistic visions of a new society were mixed up in many minds with more material dreams...

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4 New Economics

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pp. 87-111

...in July, and in the following month the highly respected economic commentator Paul Krugman, then at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, gave the term wide currency by attacking the concept. In his acceptance speech to the Republican nominating convention in Philadelphia on August 3, 2000, for example, presidential...

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5 New Immigrants

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pp. 112-138

...twentieth century—not terrorism, the explosion of new technology, or the transformation of politics or the end of the Cold War, not even the profound changes in the status and expectations and role of American women—will have more long-term consequences for the future of the United States than the new immigration. By the end of the twentieth...

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6 New Women

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pp. 139-171

...society in the 1960s and 1970s involved not race, or a new politics, but the attitudes, expectations, and life chances of American women. That, too, was to be partly dissipated in sectarian quarrels and to stutter into disappointment. But the breadth and depth of the revolution in the way women thought of themselves, and demanded...

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7 New South, Old Race

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pp. 172-202

...frustrated, then largely disappointed in the succeeding decades. Individual African Americans were brilliantly successful. The group as a whole was less fortunate. By the middle of the 1970s, the noisy claims of radical black leadership had set off a backlash in large sections of the white majority. This white resentment was more a response to the stridency of some of these demands, given prominence...

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8 New Society

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pp. 203-248

...Many of the puzzlements and the frustrations of latetwentieth- century America may be put down to the fact that the United States has now moved out to the suburbs, a type of settlement where great material comfort is often purchased at the cost of loneliness, isolation, and a sense of alienation...

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9 New World

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pp. 249-287

...Americans have seen their country rise from depths of fear and uncertainty in the 1970s to peaks of triumph and self-confidence in the 1990s, only to be shaken by an unfamiliar feeling of vulnerability on September 11, 2001. Since then they have recovered their confidence again. American military might has triumphed easily, first in Afghanistan...

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10 New Century

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pp. 288-304

...history. The most salient aspect of the American experience in the last quarter of the twentieth century, the startling growth of financial and social inequality, was at the same time historically the most uncharacteristic. In 1839 Alexis de Tocqueville began his classic...

NOTES

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pp. 305-348

SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY

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pp. 349-360

INDEX

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pp. 361-380

Further Reading

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pp. 381-381