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Ruling America: A History of Wealth and Power in a Democracy

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Ruling America: A History of Wealth and Power in a Democracy Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Ruling America offers a panoramic history of our country's ruling elites from the time of the American Revolution to the present. At its heart is the greatest of American paradoxes: How have tiny minorities of the rich and privileged consistently exercised so much power in a nation built on the notion of rule by the people?

In a series of thought-provoking essays, leading scholars of American history examine every epoch in which ruling economic elites have shaped our national experience. They explore how elites came into existence, how they established their dominance over public affairs, and how their rule came to an end. The contributors analyze the elite coalition that led the Revolution and then examine the antebellum planters of the South and the merchant patricians of the North. Later chapters vividly portray the Gilded Age "robber barons," the great finance capitalists in the age of J. P. Morgan, and the foreign-policy "Establishment" of the post-World War II years. The book concludes with a dissection of the corporate-led counter-revolution against the New Deal characteristic of the Reagan and Bush era.

Rarely in the last half-century has one book afforded such a comprehensive look at the ways elite wealth and power have influenced the American experiment with democracy. At a time when the distribution of wealth and power has never been more unequal, Ruling America is of urgent contemporary relevance.

Synopsis:

Ruling Americaoffers a panoramic history of our country's ruling elites from the time of the American Revolution to the present. At its heart is the greatest of American paradoxes: How have tiny minorities of the rich and privileged consistently exercised so much power in a nation built on the notion of rule by the people?

In a series of thought-provoking essays, leading scholars of American history examine every epoch in which ruling economic elites have shaped our national experience. They explore how elites came into existence, how they established their dominance over public affairs, and how their rule came to an end. The contributors analyze the elite coalition that led the Revolution and then examine the antebellum planters of the South and the merchant patricians of the North. Later chapters vividly portray the Gilded Age "robber barons," the great finance capitalists in the age of J. P. Morgan, and the foreign-policy "Establishment" of the post-World War II years. The book concludes with a dissection of the corporate-led counter-revolution against the New Deal characteristic of the Reagan and Bush era.

Rarely in the last half-century has one book afforded such a comprehensive look at the ways elite wealth and power have influenced the American experiment with democracy. At a time when the distribution of wealth and power has never been more unequal, Ruling Americais of urgent contemporary relevance.

Synopsis:

This book offers a panoramic history of our country's ruling elites from the time of the American Revolution to the present. At its heart is the greatest of American paradoxes: How have tiny minorities of the rich and privileged consistently exercised so much power in a nation built on the notion of rule by the people? In a series of thought-provoking essays, leading scholars of American history examine every epoch in which ruling economic elites have shaped our national experience.

About the Author

Gary Gerstle is Professor of History and Director of the Center for Historical Studies at University of Maryland, College Park

Table of Contents

Introduction
Steve Fraser and Gary Gerstle

1. The Dilemmas of Ruling Elites in Revolutionary America
Gary J. Kornblith and John M. Murrin

2. The "Slave Power" in the United States, 1783-1865
Adam Rothman

3. Merchants and Manufacturers in the Antebellum North
Sven Beckert

4. Gilded Age Gospels
David Nasaw

5. The Abortive Rule of Big Money
Alan Dawley

6. The Managerial Revitalization of the Rich
Jackson Lears

7. The Foreign Policy Establishment
Godfrey Hodgson

8. Conservative Elites and the Counterrevolution against the New Deal
Michael Lind

Coda: Democracy in America
Steve Fraser and Gary Gerstle

Notes

Acknowledgments

Contributors

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674017474
Subtitle:
A History of Wealth and Power in a Democracy
Editor:
Fraser, Steve
Editor:
Gerstle, Gary
Editor:
Fraser, Steve
Author:
Gerstle, Gary
Author:
Fraser, Steve
Editor:
Gerstle, Gary
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Location:
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Subject:
History
Subject:
History & Theory
Subject:
Democracy
Subject:
History & Theory - General
Subject:
Government - U.S. Government
Subject:
Political Ideologies - Democracy
Subject:
Democracy -- United States.
Subject:
Social classes -- Political aspects.
Subject:
Politics - General
Subject:
History - United States/General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
April 2005
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
none
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
8 x 6 x 1 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Economics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » Political Science
History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Politics
History and Social Science » US History » General
History and Social Science » World History » General

Ruling America: A History of Wealth and Power in a Democracy Used Trade Paper
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Product details 384 pages Harvard University Press - English 9780674017474 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Ruling Americaoffers a panoramic history of our country's ruling elites from the time of the American Revolution to the present. At its heart is the greatest of American paradoxes: How have tiny minorities of the rich and privileged consistently exercised so much power in a nation built on the notion of rule by the people?

In a series of thought-provoking essays, leading scholars of American history examine every epoch in which ruling economic elites have shaped our national experience. They explore how elites came into existence, how they established their dominance over public affairs, and how their rule came to an end. The contributors analyze the elite coalition that led the Revolution and then examine the antebellum planters of the South and the merchant patricians of the North. Later chapters vividly portray the Gilded Age "robber barons," the great finance capitalists in the age of J. P. Morgan, and the foreign-policy "Establishment" of the post-World War II years. The book concludes with a dissection of the corporate-led counter-revolution against the New Deal characteristic of the Reagan and Bush era.

Rarely in the last half-century has one book afforded such a comprehensive look at the ways elite wealth and power have influenced the American experiment with democracy. At a time when the distribution of wealth and power has never been more unequal, Ruling Americais of urgent contemporary relevance.

"Synopsis" by , This book offers a panoramic history of our country's ruling elites from the time of the American Revolution to the present. At its heart is the greatest of American paradoxes: How have tiny minorities of the rich and privileged consistently exercised so much power in a nation built on the notion of rule by the people? In a series of thought-provoking essays, leading scholars of American history examine every epoch in which ruling economic elites have shaped our national experience.
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