In this momentous work, acclaimed labor historian Joshua B. Freeman presents an epic portrait of the United States in the latter half of the twentieth century, revealing a nation galvanized by change even as conflict seethed within its borders. Beginning in 1945, he charts the astounding rise of the labor movement and its pitched struggle with the bastions of American capitalism in the 1940s and ’50s, untangling the complicated threads between the workers’ agenda and that of the civil rights and women’s movements. Through the lens of civil rights, the Cold War struggle, and the labor movement, American Empire teaches us something profound about our past while illuminating the issues that continue to animate American political discourse today.
“A supremely intelligent narrative.” — Michael Kazin
“Compellingly readable and often passionate.” – The Nation
“The best grand synthesis of postwar U.S. history we have.” — Mike Wallce, Pulitzer-Prize winning coauthor of Gotham