Written with the same verve and gusto that helped win the 1999 Pulitzer Prize in History for his and Edwin G. Burrows's "Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898", "A New Deal for New York" is a stirring call-to-arms from the distinguished historian Mike Wallace. In the wake of the September 11 attacks, Wallace argues that we not just rebuild and memorialize the Trade Center site, but rethink and plan more broadly for the entire city's future. He tells the fascinating and largely unknown history of the financial center, revealing a wide variety of myths and obfuscations about the city's growth and success in recent years. He speaks candidly and convincingly about various options for rebuilding downtown, and he summarizes a wide variety of ambitious but viable projects to improve all of New York by launching what he calls the new New Deal – a multi-pronged plan that, mindful of both the grand successes and dismal disappointments of the original New Deal, would feature such longed-for improvements as a revitalized port, improved mass transit, and more affordable housing. In short, he argues, September 11 has provided us an opening, as a city, to make our own course corrections on the river of history – if we have the desire and can summon the will. It won't be the end of an era unless we decide to make it one. Happily, there are substantial grounds for believing that, under the press of hard blows and hard times, our audacious metropolis will again lead the nation in recalling our history, reimagining our future, and seizing hold of our collective destiny.
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Mike Wallace is Director of the Gotham Center for New York History. He is now working on the second volume of "Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898", the first volume of which, co-authored with Edwin G. Burrows, won the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for History. "Gotham II", which he is writing on his own, will carry the story up through the 20th century. Wallace was born and raised in New York City and its environs. He received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Columbia University, studying with Richard Hofstadter, with whom he collaborated on "American Violence: A Documentary History." He is also the author of "Mickey Mouse History and Other Essays on American Memory", winner of the Historic Preservation Book Prize, and "Terrorism". He has taught history to police officers and others at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York since 1971, served as adviser and on-camera commentator in Ric Burns's film "New York: A Documentary History", and for 25 years has helped publish and edit the "Radical History Review". Wallace lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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