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Designed to encourage critical thinking about history, the Major Problems in American History series introduces students to both primary sources and analytical essays on important topics in U.S. history. This reader serves as the primary anthology for the introductory survey course, covering the subject's entire chronological span. Comprehensive topical coverage includes the Cold War, the cultural and political movements of the 60s, the return of conservatism, life in the new information age, and race and ethnicity.In the Third Edition, greater emphasis is placed on social and cultural history, and a new chapter focuses on 9/11, the war on terror, and the war in Iraq. Key pedagogical elements of the Major Problems format have been retained: 14-15 chapters per volume, chapter introductions, headnotes, and suggested readings.
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Robert Griffith, Professor of History at American University, received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. A specialist of the history of the United States since 1945, he is the author of The Politics of Fear: Joseph R. McCarthy and the Senate (1970).Review:
Each chapter ends with "Further Reading." 1. The Origins of Postwar America ESSAYS Thomas G. Paterson, The Origins of the Postwar International System Alan Brinkley, The Legacies of World War II Byron E. Shafer, The Puzzle of Postwar Politics 2. The Origins of the Cold War DOCUMENTS 1. President Harry S. Truman Discusses the Atom Bomb at Potsdam, July 1945 2. George F. Kennan's "Long Telegram," 1946 3. Secretary of Commerce Henry A. Wallace Urges a Conciliatory Approach, July 1946 4. Soviet Ambassador Nikolai Novikov Reports on the U.S. Drive for World Supremacy, September 1946 5. The Truman Doctrine, March 1947 6. Senator Joseph McCarthy Charges the Democrats Are "Soft on Communism" 7. The President's Advisors Urge Military Expansion (NSC-68), April 1950 ESSAYS Arnold A. Offner, President Harry S. Truman and the Origins of the Cold War John Lewis Gaddis, Two Cold War Empires 3. A Consumer's Republic: The 1950s and the Emergence of a New Economy of Mass Consumption DOCUMENTS 1. U.S. Business Celebrates the "Miracle of America," 1948 2. A Report on the "Baby Boom," 1954 3. Newsweek Decries the Problem of Dangerous Teens, 1955 4. Life Magazine Identifies the New Teen-age Market, 1959 5. U.S. News and World Report Assesses the Perils of Mass Culture and the Evils of Television, 1955 6. Vance Packard warns against the "Hidden Persuaders," 1957 ESSAYS Roland Marchand, Visions of Classlessness Kelly Schrum, Making the American Girl 4. John F. Kennedy, the Cuban Revolution, and the Cold War DOCUMENTS 1. Fidel Castro Denounces U.S. Policy Toward Cuba, 1960 2. President John F. Kennedy Calls for an Alliance for Progress, 1961 3. A Board of Inquiry Reports on the Bay of Pigs, 1961 4. A Senate Committee Investigates U.S. Plots to Assassinate Castro 1960-1965, (1975) 5. President Kennedy and His Advisers Debate Options in the Missile Crisis, October 16, 1962 6. Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev Appeals to President Kennedy, October 26, 1962 7. Soviet Ambassador Anatoly I. Dobrynin Reports on His Meeting with Robert Kennedy, October 28, 1962 ESSAYS Thomas G. Paterson, Spinning Out of Control: Kennedy's War Against Cuba and the Missile Crisis Ernest R. May and Philip D. Zelikow, Aftermath 5. The African-American Struggle for Equality DOCUMENTS 1. The New York Times Reports a Murder in Georgia, 1946 2. African-American Parents Petition the Clarendon, S.C., School Board, 1949 3. A South African Novelist Examines the Plight of "The Negro in the North," 1954 4. Franklin McCain Remembers the First Sit-in, 1960 5. Martin Luther King Jr., "I Have a Dream," 1963 6. Stokely Carmichael Explains "Black Power," 1967 7. A Senate Committee Reports on the FBI's Campaign Against Martin Luther King, 1963-1968 (1976) 8. Police and Fire Department Logs Record an Urban Riot, 1967 ESSAYS Charles Payne, The View from the Trenches Thomas J. Sugrue, The Continuing Racial Crisis 6. The Great Society and the Politics of Liberal Reform DOCUMENTS 1. President Lyndon B. Johnson Declares War on Poverty, 1964 2. Congress Strikes Down Segregation in Public Accommodations: The Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title II (1964) 3. Ronald Reagan Warns of the Dangers of the Welfare State, 1964 4. Two White House Aides Report the Achievements of the Great Society, 1966 5. A Conservative Strategist Hails an "Emerging Republican Majority," 1969 6. Earth Day, 1970 ESSAYS James T. Patterson, The Rise of "Rights Consciousness" Michael D. Lassiter, Suburban Politics and the Limits of the Great Society 7. The New Radicalism: Politics and Culture in the 1960s DOCUMENTS 1. Students for a Democratic Society Issue the Port Huron Statement, 1962 2. Jerry Rubin Declares Himself a "Child of Amerika," 1970 3. Radicals Proclaim: "You Don't Need a Weatherman to Know Which Way the Wind Blows," 1969 4. The FBI's Secret Campaign Against the New Left, 1968-1971 (1976) 5. Raymond Mungo Searches for a New Age at Total Loss Farm, 1970 6. A Pollster Reports on "The Big Chill," 1974 ESSAYS Maurice Isserman and Michael Kazin, The Contradictory Legacy of the Sixties Hugh Heclo, The Sixties and the Origins of "Postmodern" America 8. From the Feminine Mystique to "Second Wave" Feminism DOCUMENTS 1. Betty Friedan on "The Problem That Has No Name," 1963 2. NOW Statement of Purpose, 1966 3. Redstockings Manifesto, 1970 4. Welfare is a Women's Issue, 1972 5. A Redbook Magazine Reader Discovers Consciousness-Raising, 1973 6. The Supreme Court Rules on Abortion: Roe v. Wade, 1973 7. The Equal Rights Amendment, 1972 8. Phyllis Schlafly Proclaims the Power of the Positive Woman, 1977 ESSAYS Alice Echols, Women's Liberation and Sixties Radicalism Beth Bailey, Women at Work 9. Vietnam and the Crisis of American Empire DOCUMENTS 1. The Vietnamese Declare Their Independence, 1945 2. President Dwight D. Eisenhower Explains the Domino Theory, 1954 3. Final Declaration of the Geneva Conference on Indochina, 1954 4. A South Vietnamese Peasant Explains Why He Joined the Vietcong, 1961 (1986) 5. The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, 1964 6. President Lyndon Johnson's Advisors Debate Expanding the War, 1965 7. A "Tunnel Rat" Testifies About the My Lai Massacre, 1968, 1969 8. The Paris Accords, 1973 ESSAYS Michael H. Hunt, The Wages of War Arnold R. Isaacs, Completing Memories 10. Ronald Reagan and the Transformation of America DOCUMENTS 1. President Jimmy Carter and the Crisis of the American Spirit, 1979 2. Presidential Candidate Ronald Reagan Calls for New Economic Policies, 1980 3. A New Right Activist Explains Conservative Success, 1980 4. President Ronald Reagan Proclaims America's "Spiritual Reawakening," 1983 5. A Congressional Committee Reports on "Irangate," 1987 6. An Environmentalist Attacks the Administration's Record, 1988 7. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop Recalls the Administration's Response to the AIDS Crisis, 1981-1988 (2001) ESSAYS Benjamin Ginsberg and Martin Shefter, The Republicans Take Control Jules Tygel, A Disputed Legacy 11. The Promises and Perils of a New Economy DOCUMENTS 1. "New Democrats" Hail the "New Economy," 1998 2. A Federal Reserve Report Extols "Mass Customization," 1998 3. Money Magazine Asks of Wal-Mart, "How Big Can it Get?" 1999 4. A Critic Assails the Influence of Wal-Mart, 1999 5. A Columnist Decries "Outsourcing" in the Global New Economy, 2004 6. Americans for Democratic Action Reports Growing Poverty and Inequality, 2004 7. A Research Firm "Segments" the American Market, 2000 ESSAYS Barbara Ehrenreich, Working at Wal-Mart Michael J. Weiss, The Fragmenting of America 12. E Pluribus Unum: Race and Ethniciy in a Changing World DOCUMENTS 1. Coming to America, 1900-2002 2. Proposition 187: Californians Seek to Close the Door to Undocumented Immigrants, 1994 3. Two Reporters Describe Los Angeles's Racial Tensions, 1995 4. Social Scientists Report on the "New Americans," 1997 5. An African-American Novelist Decries "Race Talk," 1993 6. Richard Rodriguez Ponders What It Means to Be "Brown." 2002 7. Americans Express Support for Both Unity and Diversity, 2003 ESSAYS George J. Sanchez, Race, Immigration and Nativism Thomas C. Holt, Race, Nation and the Global Economy 13. The Politics and Political Culture in "Postmodern" America DOCUMENTS 1. Presidential Candidate Bill Clinton Promises a "New Covenant," 1992 2. "Gays in the Military" Prompts Mobilization of Conservatives, 1993 3 The Republican "Contract with America," 1994 4. President Bill Clinton Ends "Welfare as We Know It," 1996 5. Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr's Indictment of President Clinton, 1998 6. Who Voted for Whom in 2000: A Chart 7. A Columnist Reports on How the Nation's Agenda is Set, 2000 ESSAYS Bruce Miroff, Bill Clinton and the Postmodern Presidency Matthew A. Crenson and Benjamin Ginsberg, The Imperial Presidency Redivivus 14. New World Order DOCUMENTS 1. President George H.W. Bush Announces a New World Order, 1990 2. One World: An American Diplomat Hails the Opportunities of a New Era, 1995 3. Osama Bin Laden Declares Jihad Against America, 1998 4. The New York Times Reports Last Words from the World Trade Center, 2001 5. President George W. Bush Announces a New National Security Strategy, 2002 6. Senator Robert C. Byrd Charges "The Emperor Has No Clothes," 2003 7. An Army Officer Ponders How America Is Losing Hearts and Minds in Iraq, 2004 ESSAYS John Lewis Gaddis, Setting Right a Dangerous World Michael H. Hunt, In the Wake of September 11
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