Kim Phillips-Fein

Student watching smoke emanating from the student center after 1969 protests.

The CUNY Experiment

The City University of New York has long stood at once for meritocratic uplift and for civil disobedience.
Collage of Heather Cox Richardson and the subjects of her book -- FDR, Lincoln, and Trump.

We Have No Princes: Heather Cox Richardson and the Battle over American History

One interpretation presents the country as irredeemably tainted by its past. Another contends that the United States has also tended toward egalitarianism.
The "fangs" of private equity dripping blood on the U.S. economy.

Conspicuous Destruction

Two books argue that private equity created an economic order in which getting rich quickly preempts other values, undermining companies and evading the law.
Illustration of someone walking up stairs made up of the working class.

How the War on Poverty Stalled

The study of poverty has flourished in recent decades. Why haven’t the lives of the poor improved?
A shattered painting of Adam Smith.

The Betrayal of Adam Smith

How conservatives made him their icon and distorted his ideas.
Then–Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama in Mitchell, S.D.

What Does It Take to Win?

A new history of American politics examines the past and future of political realignments.
Ripped American flag.

The Greatest Threat to the Unity of the Country Is the Class Divide

How many rich moderates would join the MAGA far right if redistribution policies threatened their wealth?
Collage of various Republican faces and symbols.

The Long Unraveling of the Republican Party

Three books explore a history of fractious extremism that predates Donald Trump.
"Impeach Earl Warren" billboard by the John Birch Society.

Rise of the Far-Right Ultras

A new book shows just how porous the dividing line has been between the far right and mainstream conservatism.
Political cartoon of the U.S Capitol

The Liberals Who Weakened Trust in Government

How public interest groups inadvertently aided the right’s ascendency.
A picture of Boston being modernized through urban development, construction is happening on several buildings.

How Did American Cities Become So Unequal?

A new history of Ed Logue and his vision of urban renewal documents the broken promises of midcentury liberalism.
A photo of a woman wearing a mask standing on a subway platform in Times Square.

Rethinking the Solution to New York’s Fiscal Crisis

We are at the end of an era, as choices made in the 1970s have created a society that seems unable to cope with a crisis such as that posed by the coronavirus.

Remnants of the New Deal Order

We can only understand the left’s present dilemmas by seeing them in light of the conflicted legacy of the New Deal.

Did the New Deal Need FDR?

His political evolution points to a different locus of power than the one liberals tend to invoke when discussing the era’s history.

What’s Left of Generation X

To be Gen X was to be disaffected from the consumer norms of the 1980s, but to be pessimistic about any chance for social transformation.

The Failed Political Promise of Silicon Valley

Tech was meant to help us transcend our most intractable problems. What went wrong?

Against the Great Man Theory of Historians

Without accounting for the often-invisible work of others in his research, Robert Caro's new memoir is not so much inspiration as an exercise in self-celebration.

Fear and Loathing of the Green New Deal

What the backlash to the emergency legislation reveals about the age-old pathologies of the right.

The Bitter Origins of the Fight Over Big Government

What the battle between Herbert Hoover and FDR can teach us.

Atlas Weeps

Alan Greenspan and Adrian Wooldridge’s strange elegy for capitalism.

Philanthropists Will Not Save Us

All of Andrew Carnegie’s arguments were devoted to explaining why inequality ultimately was good: not only for its beneficiaries, but for poor people as well.
New York City skyscrapers

Capital of the World

The radical and reactionary currents of New York at the turn of the 20th century.

Company Men

The 200-year legal struggle that led to Citizens United and gave corporations the rights of people.
Multiple pieces of faces from different faces that come together to form one face

The 200-Year Legal Struggle That Led to Citizens United

How businesses campaigned to win constitutional rights and expand their political reach.