At Home He's a Tourist

He fills his head with culture/ He gives himself an ulcer.

Monday, May 10, 2004


McGerr, Michael. A Fierce Discontent: The Rise and fall of the Progressive Movement in America, 1870-1920. Free Press.

Publishers Weekly: “McGerr hits all the usual notes associated with the Progressive era…It is his vivid portrait of turn-of-the-century America, however, that separates this book from the pack. Expertly weaving an array of vignettes and themes throughout his narrative, McGerr pulls into focus a period in American history too often blurred by the rapid pace of social, political and cultural change…history at its best…truly a remarkable effort.” Library Journal: “a detailed and readable study….offers a fascinating description…Highly recommended.” Kirkus: “Highly accessible…a lucid overview.” Booklist: “fresh and incisive...vigorous and compelling…” History: Review of New Books: “has a clear and lively style and avoids analytic terms currently in use by professional historians…” Nation: “consistently intelligent, superbly crafted…If there’s a flaw in McGerr’s thoughtful stdy, it’s his virtual silence about party politics.”
Foreign Affairs: “flawed but useful…a better understanding of the limits of Progressivism than more conventionally liberal historians…Yet McGerr’s nostalgic radicalism creates blind spots of his own.” First Things: “McGerr has gathered an impressive amount of information about the Progressive movement of the early twentieth century…But on his own evidence, Progressives neither accomplished nor attempted what he says they did…His key analytical model…has been a commonplace since the 1950s…tacked-on conclusion…Advice to readers: garner the data, ignore the analysis.”


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