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American Chronicle - Gordon, Lois; Gordon, Alan - Yale University Press
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American Chronicle

Year by Year Through the Twentieth Century

  • Lois Gordon and Alan Gordon; Introduction by Roger Rosenblatt
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Selected as an outstanding book by University Press Books for Public and Secondary School Libraries

This mesmerizing book is the ultimate American almanac, a unique record of life in the United States since 1900. For the first time, all the news, entertainment, art, literature, science and technology, sports, and fashion highlights are recorded in a single book, and this documentation is enriched by anecdotes, facts and figures, ads and fads, headlines, and memorable quotations—as well by as more than a thousand photographs. And in addition to the listings, a lively and perceptive essay by Lois and Alan Gordon introduces each decade, capturing the flavor of each period.

The section on the 1900s, for example, commemorates Teddy Roosevelt, conservation, the first movie theater, the first World Series, vaudeville, ragtime, Henry James, and Frank Lloyd Wright. The section on the fifties considers the significance of Joseph McCarthy, I Like Ike, The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, The Power of Positive Thinking, “Father Knows Best,” “Rebel Without a Cause,” The Lonely Crowd, Marilyn Monroe, Rosa Parks, and Sputnik. With its extraordinary wealth of information, American Chronicle ultimately conveys the unique imprint of each year and provides the stuff of contemporary memory. It will evoke and expand the contexts of all our lives.

Lois Gordon is professor of English and comparative literature at Fairleigh Dickinson University and the author of numerous books on contemporary literature and culture, most recently The World of Samuel Beckett, 1906–1946. Alan Gordon, M.D., is a psychiatrist who works in both public and private practice and is a former faculty member of the Mount Sinai Medical College.

A selection of the History Book Club

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