A clear-eyed and harrowing story of a largely African American community's struggles in the face of grinding poverty, urban renewal schemes gone wrong, and a forced ghettoization by the sea.
This study is required reading for historians... Highly recommended.
a photographic portrait through fifteen well-chosen images, each really saying more than a thousand words
(Eugenie L. Birch The Journal of American History
Overall this is a very good book...that is worth the time of any scholar with an interest in urban development...I plan to have my doctoral students read it.
(Robert K. Whelan Journal of Urban Affairs
A wonderful combination of scholarship and nostalgia. The Kaplans are astute historians/sociologists and their book reads like a trip down memory lane. Throughout the manuscript there are insightful analyses of an autocratic, but imaginative, power broker, rapacious real estate investors, and insensitive politicians. This enthralling narrative shows us, once again, how racism, greed, and stupidity combined to destroy a once thriving middle class community.
(Leonard Dinnerstein, University of Arizona)|
The story of New York City's Rockaway, located along the ocean in the borough of Queens, is a remarkable tale. This choice section of the city went from a community housing many summer New Yorkers as well as year around workingclass and middle class residents to a run down and poor neighborhood after World War II. Sadly, a prime area of beaches fell victim not only to racism, but also to politics and neglect. This change is a story worth knowing, and with careful research, rich detail, and a feeling for Rockway's residents, Kaplan tells it well.
(David Reimers, professor emeritus, New York University)