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Two award-winning historians explore the origins of a divided America.
In the middle of the 1970s, America entered a new era of doubt and division. Major political, economic and social crises—Watergate, Vietnam, the rights revolutions of the 1960s–had cracked the existing social order. In the years that followed, the story of our own lifetimes would be written. Longstanding historical fault lines over income inequality, racial division and a revolution in gender roles and sexual norms would deepen and fuel a polarised political landscape. In Fault Lines, leading historians Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer reveal how the divisions of the present day began almost four decades ago, and how they were echoed and amplified by a fracturing media landscape that witnessed the rise of cable TV, the internet and social media.
How did the United States become so divided? Fault Lines offers one of the few comprehensive, wide-angle history views towards an answer.
“Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer’s Fault Lines is a brilliant primer for understanding the troubling precedents for today’s mass American political dysfunction. Both historians are deeply informed and surefooted thinkers. A must-read foundational work for our time!” — Douglas Brinkley, history commentator for CNN
“[With] deep detail and taut-as-a-thriller pacing…the authors detail how the Democratic and—especially—Republican parties moved the country from post-New Deal liberalism to an increasingly hard-right philosophy, culminating with Trump…If Fault Lines doesn’t provide easy answers to our current dilemma, its cleareyed, pin-sharp overview is a necessary map of how we got here.” — Michaelangelo Matos, Rolling Stone
“Kruse and Zelizer do an admirable job of creating a narrative out of the chaotic events of the recent past.” — L. Benjamin Rolsky, Los Angeles Review of Books