The Cause: The Fight for American Liberalism from Franklin Roosevelt to Barack Obama

Front Cover
Viking, 2012 - History - 561 pages
1 Review

The definitive history of American postwar liberalism, told through the lens of those who brought it to life.

Liberalism stands proudly at the center of American politics and culture. Driven by passion for social justice, tempered by respect for the difficulty of change, liberals have struggled to end economic inequality, racial discrimination, and political repression. Liberals have fueled their cause with the promise of American life and visions of national greatness, seeking to transform the White House; the halls of Congress, the courts, the worlds of entertainment, law, media, and the course of public opinion. Bestselling author, journalist, and historian Eric Alterman, together with historian Kevin Mattson, traces the history of liberal ideals through the lives and struggles of fascinating personalities. The Cause tells the remarkable story of politicians, intellectuals, visionaries, activists, and public personalities battling for the heart and soul of the nation.

The first full-scale treatment of postwar liberalism, The Cause offers an epic saga driven by stories of grand aspirations, principled ambitions, tragic flaws, and the ironies of history of the people who fought for America to live up to the highest ideals of its history.

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Anniik - LibraryThing

This book was an interesting history of liberalism from FDR to Obama. However, it was a very dry read and the author has a habit of going off on to random historical tangents that have little to ... Read full review

THE CAUSE: The Fight for American Liberalism from Franklin Roosevelt to Barack Obama

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A liberal columnist and a professor examine the zigzag route of liberal politics since the New Deal.Before the book was finished, Mattson (Contemporary History/Ohio Univ.; "What the Heck Are You Up To ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

About the author (2012)

Eric Alterman is Distinguished Professor of English and Journalism at Brooklyn College and the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. A columnist for The Nation, The Forward, and The Daily Best, he is senior fellow of the Center for American Progress, the Nation Institute, and the World Policy Institute. The author of eight previous books, including the national bestseller What Liberal Media?, Alterman is the winner of the George Orwell Award, the Jack London Literary Prize, and the Mirror Award for media criticism. A graduate of Cornell, Yale, and Stanford universities, he lives with his family in Manhattan.

Bibliographic information