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Common Ground: A Turbulent Decade in the Lives of Three American Families Paperback – August 12, 1986
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
The first family are brahmans, from Harvard Law and straight into the Mayor's office in a moment of idealism that would forever change his career. He is a mechanic of political change, who is trying to lead a good and honorable life. Then there is a working class Irish family, from the other side of the tracks. The widowed mother becomes a great adversary of the process underway, in no way racist but opposed for very practical and personal reasons to forced busing. Finally, there is a black family, struggling to get by amidst dashed hopes and pathological mental illness, the supposed benificiariers of a great social experiment. The portrayals of these lives - all real and thoroughly investigated by an absolutely first-rate investigative journalist - are beyond novellistic realism. The personalities are so vivid and well drawn that it is simply astonishing.
Then there is the wider political/historical milieu, Boston in the early 1970s. Lukas stops at nothing to create a composite picture: there is the mayor Kevin White (whom I was astonished to learn was considered by Jimmy Carter as a running mate in 1976), Ted Kennedy, and scores of others including the archdiscese and various minor politician-demagogues hoping to make a career out of the crisis. The portrait is as beautiful and detailed as the Sistine Chapel, exposing the best, the worst, and the unexpected in American politics of the period. Lukacs' talent to do all of this is simply extraordinary.Read more ›
I've lived in Massachusetts/Boston my entire life. I regret not reading this book earlier.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Aside from the author having won the Pulitzer Prize for thus work, one finds this slice of the 1970s bussing crisis in Boston a compelling read, as the author traces the history of... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Roderick S. Haynes
Brilliant, comprehensive, in-depth look not just at busing in Boston, but at the history of class, race, education, politics and journalism in Boston. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Condor Reads
A must-read for any Massachusetts resident. Period.
A should-read for any resident of the United States of America, or anyone who wants to begin to be able to understand... Read more
Common Ground is a classic which everyone should read. This is a second read for me in many years.Published 8 months ago by Laurie C.
Fascinating & well-written book. Mr. Lukas nails it! I lived through it & he gets it right.Published 8 months ago by Nancy J. Whitcomb
One of the best books I've ever read.
A brilliant, trenchant look at the Boston busing crisis through the prisms of race, class and privilege. Read more
Reads like a novel, which is the best thing you can say about a history. Brings the time and people alive, giving detailed histories of all the parties, including their family... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
As a resident of Boston and someone who was in high school during this particular period of time, I was very intrigued by Common Ground. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Joe Flynn