The Origins of the Urban Crisis

The Origins of the Urban Crisis Cover

The Origins of the Urban Crisis

Race and Inequality in Postwar Detroit

By Thomas J. Sugrue

Princeton University Press, Paperback, 9780691162553, 375pp.

Publication Date: April 27, 2014

Description

Once America's "arsenal of democracy," Detroit is now the symbol of the American urban crisis. In this reappraisal of America's racial and economic inequalities, Thomas Sugrue asks why Detroit and other industrial cities have become the sites of persistent racialized poverty. He challenges the conventional wisdom that urban decline is the product of the social programs and racial fissures of the 1960s. Weaving together the history of workplaces, unions, civil rights groups, political organizations, and real estate agencies, Sugrue finds the roots of today's urban poverty in a hidden history of racial violence, discrimination, and deindustrialization that reshaped the American urban landscape after World War II.

This Princeton Classics edition includes a new preface by Sugrue, discussing the lasting impact of the postwar transformation on urban America and the chronic issues leading to Detroit's bankruptcy.



About the Author
Thomas J. Sugrue is Professor of History and Social and Cultural Analysis at New York University, specializing in twentieth-century American politics, urban history, civil rights, and race. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a member of the Society of American Historians, and past president of both the Urban History Association and the Social Science History Association. He is author of Not Even Past: Barack Obama and the Burden of Race and Sweet Land of Liberty: The Forgotten Struggle for Civil Rights in the North. His first book, The Origins of the Urban Crisis, won the Bancroft Prize in American History, the Philip Taft Prize in Labor History, and the President's Book Award of the Social Science History Association, among other honors. In 2005, Princeton University Press selected The Origins of the Urban Crisis as one of its 100 most influential books of the past hundred years.