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The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America Hardcover – May 21, 2013

4.4 out of 5 stars 843 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* How have we come to feel that neither the government nor the private sector works as it should and that the shrinking middle class has few prospects of recovering its former glory? Through profiles of several Americans, from a factory worker to an Internet billionaire, Packer, staff writer for the New Yorker, offers a broad and compelling perspective on a nation in crisis. Packer focuses on the lives of a North Carolina evangelist, son of a tobacco farmer, pondering the new economy of the rural South; a Youngstown, Ohio, factory worker struggling to survive the decline of the manufacturing sector; a Washington lobbyist confronting the distance between his ideals and the realities of the nation’s capital; and a Silicon Valley entrepreneur pondering the role of e-commerce in a radically changing economy. Interspersed throughout are profiles of leading economic, political, and cultural figures, including Newt Gingrich, Colin Powell, Raymond Carver, Sam Walton, and Jay-Z. Also sprinkled throughout are alarming headlines, news bites, song lyrics, and slogans that capture the unsettling feeling that the nation and its people are adrift. Packer offers an illuminating, in-depth, sometimes frightening view of the complexities of decline and the enduring hope for recovery. --Vanessa Bush

From Bookforum

Though The Unwinding is manifestly an homage to the U.S.A. trilogy of John Dos Passos, Packer attempts something far more ambitious and original. The book, an epic retelling of American history from 1978 to 2012, is a kind of fantasia--a set of variations on themes without the support of an overarching narrative. This is a brilliant and innovative book that transcends journalism to become literature. --Michael Lind

Product details

  • Item Weight : 1.49 pounds
  • Hardcover : 448 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0374102414
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0374102418
  • Product Dimensions : 6.49 x 1.35 x 9.33 inches
  • Publisher : Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st Edition (May 21, 2013)
  • Language: : English
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 843 ratings
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