"Simultaneously hilarious and the best thing ever written on public history and its contestation." --Mike Davis
, author of City of Quartz
"A fascinating and entertaining book." --Eric Foner,
author of The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery.
"Combines the author's splendid skills as a reporter with the eye of a scholar. Lively and fun, yes, but also analytically and scholarly grounded. . . a rare and remarkable achievement." -- Rick Perlstein
, author of Nixonland
"trenchant . . . and uncommonly frisky."
Tom Carson, The American Prospect.
"As popular reading, it's got the humor and wit of Sarah Vowell's Assassination Vacation and James Loewen's Sundown Towns and DJ Waldie's Holy Land. By which I mean it's witty and kinda mean, and exhilarating bad fun."--O.C. Weekly: Orange County News, Arts & Ent
"Wiener's wit and deft grasp of geopolitics make for one of the season's most intriguing historical books."--Philadelphia City Paper
"Who knew the Cold War was funny? Wiener's adventures in American historical memory are surprisingly lively."--Zocalo Public Square
"A provocative and fascinating new book."--Los Angeles Review of Books
From the Inside Flap
Here’s a book that would've split the sides of Thucydides. Wiener’s magical mystery tour of Cold War museums is simultaneously hilarious and the best thing ever written on public history and its contestation. Mike Davis, author of City of Quartz
Jon Wiener, an astute observer of how history is perceived by the general public, shows us how official efforts to shape popular memory of the Cold War have failed. His journey across America to visit exhibits, monuments, and other historical sites, demonstrates how quickly the Cold War has faded from popular consciousness. A fascinating and entertaining book.” Eric Foner, author of Reconstruction: America's Unfinished Revolution, 18631877
"In How We Forgot the Cold War, Jon Wiener shows how conservatives triedand failedto commemorate the Cold War as a noble victory over the global forces of tyranny, a 'good war' akin to World War II. Displaying splendid skills as a reporter in addition to his discerning eye as a scholar, this historian's travelogue convincingly shows how the right sought to extend its preferred policy of 'rollback' to the arena of public memory. In a country where historical memory has become an obsession, Wiener’s ability to document the ambiguities and absences in these commemorations is an unusual accomplishment.” Rick Perlstein, author of Nixonland: The Rise of a President and the Fracturing of America
In this terrific piece of scholarly journalism, Jon Wiener imaginatively combines scholarship on the Cold War, contemporary journalism, and his own observations of various sites commemorating the era to describe both what they contain and, just as importantly, what they do not. By interrogating the standard conservative brand of American triumphalism, Wiener offers an interpretation of the Cold War that emphasizes just how unnecessary the conflict was and how deleterious its aftereffects have really been.”Ellen Schrecker, author of Many Are The Crimes: McCarthyism in America