November Theme: American History
For a month that annually celebrates the Thanksgiving holiday, the heritage of Native Americans, election season, and towards the end, a shopping frenzy that fuels the cycles of capitalism and consumerism, November brings with it many opportunities to reflect on the current state of American culture and the history that shaped it.
We’ll have a chance to cover Sister Citizen, but no doubt you’ve seen author Melissa Harris-Perry all over media outlets this fall, guest hosting the Rachel Maddow Show, in theaters reviewing The Help, writing her column for The Nation. And since our publication of David Margolick’s Elizabeth and Hazel, that famous photograph of two young women is once again all over the headlines.
From Paul Starr, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and senior advisor to President Clinton on health policy, comes Remedy and Reaction: The Peculiar American Struggle over Health Care Reform, which is already starting discussions on Facebook.
Two new books in our Why X Matters series recreate the picture of mid-century public discourse: Adam Kirsch’s Why Trilling Matters and Charles Lemert’s Why Niebuhr Matters; American Modernism and the Steiglitz circle of influence created an inimitable legacy of twentieth-century art; William Thomas’s The Iron Way returns our consciousness to the Civil War and Reconstruction, with the railroad playing a central role in the shaping of modern America; and Julie Flavell takes us even further into the days when London was capital of America.
And as we lead up to the holidays, we’ll have a contest quiz about Unpacking My Library: Writers and Their Books, featuring the personal libraries of Alison Bechdel, Stephen Carter, Junot Díaz, Rebecca Goldstein and Stephen Pinker, Lev Grossman and Sophie Gee, Jonathan Lethem, Claire Messud and James Wood, Philip Pullman, Gary Shteyngart, and Edmund White.
Be sure to read and follow along; as is often the case in America, there’s more…!