bubbleIn three short weeks we will publish an exciting and highly anticipated title, A Bubble in Time: America During the Interwar Years, 1989–2001 by the distinguished historian William O’Neill. The book paints a compelling informal history of the short but lively period between the end of the Cold War and the beginning of the War on Terror, when America suddenly found itself in an age of peace, prosperity, and well-being. In this period, O’Neill argues, Americans were freer from fear than at any time since the 1920s, and from these circumstances emerged new obsessions with tabloid media, cell phones and SUVs, and political correctness–not to mention Bill and Monica, O. J. Simpson, and Pamela Anderson. O’Neill writes of this boisterous and already nostalgia-inspiring era with scintillating insight and wit, sure to jog the memories of anyone who lived it. Take a look at some of the high praise we have already received:

“Few historians possess the literary gifts of William O’Neill, whose previous books on the 1950s and the 1960s remain gems of modern American history. O’Neill’s great strength is his ability to weave the disparate strands of politics and popular culture into a seamless story—a trend he continues with A Bubble in Time, a witty and wickedly perceptive account of American life in the decade of Desert Storm, Bill Clinton, O. J. Simpson and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. This is narrative history at its finest.”—David Oshinsky, author of Polio: An American Story

“Well written and evenhanded, with a taut, perceptive narrative, William O’Neill’s A Bubble in Time does for the 1990s what Frederick Lewis Allen and Only Yesterday did for the 1920s.”—Lewis L. Gould, author of The Modern American Presidency

“Many of us who survived the fitful years between the end of the Cold War and the start of the so-called War on Terror often had trouble connecting the dots—from the “Mother of Battles” to Black Hawk Down, from O.J.’s black glove to Monica’s blue dress. We all owe a debt to the historical grasp of William L. O’Neill. A Bubble in Time recasts those episodes and others into a gestalt that makes more sense than the sum of its memorable but disjointed parts. And in the process he helps us to a better understanding of the twenty-first-century history we are now living through.”—Robert Shogan, author of No Sense of Decency: The Army-McCarthy Hearing

“O’Neill is one of the most impressive scholars of mid-century America, and now he has emerged as an equally important interpreter of an era that is just making the transition from newspaper headlines to history.”—Victor Brooks, author of Boomers

A Bubble in Time: America During the Interwar Years, 1989–2001 by William O’Neill will be available for purchase everywhere on September 18, 2009.



morgan_freeman_01 Morgan Freeman, Academy Award-winning actor and star of films such as Driving Miss Daisy, The Shawshank Redemption, and Million Dollar Baby, has good things to say about Gene Dattel’s new book, Cotton and Race in the Making of America. Throughout his career, Freeman has been outspoken about his racial beliefs. For example, he has  criticized Black History Month on the grounds that to highlight African American history specifically for a month is to marginalize it. “I don’t want a black history month,” he has said. “Black history is American history.” In any case, he has taken quite an interest in Dattel’s forthcoming book, which among other things provides a new perspective on the rise of racism in America in the nineteenth century. Here’s what he had to say:

“Gene Dattel’s book tells the story of the irresistible power of cotton that changed the destiny of the nation—not just the region. America’s material obsession blossomed in the cotton fields, where blacks were trapped. Racial hostility—both North and South—was the enabler. His book masterfully captures the history and its painful legacy.”



The current Shakespeare in the Park production “The Bachhae” by Euripides is based on Nicholas Rudall’s new translation, published by Ivan R. Dee, and features music by Philip Glass. A paperback edition of the play is onsale at the Delacorte Theater concession in Central Park. The production runs August 11-30 in New York City.


This October we’ll be releasing Cotton and Race in the Making of America: The Human Costs of Economic Power by Gene Dattel, a historical study of the cotton industry and its effects on slavery, racism, and America’s rise to economic power. Already it has received fantastic advance praise, particularly from respected academics around the country. Have a look at a few snippets written by reputable university professors:

“Dattel explains insightfully just how slavery and racial discrimination came to plague our nation’s ideals and the promise of American life. Mostly it was a by-product—north and south, east and west—of trying to earn a buck, of pursuing the Almighty Dollar. His book is a gem—one of the finest works on the American national experience to appear in many years.” —Richard Sylla, New York University; President Emeritus of the Economic History Association

“Gene Dattel has produced a superb study of King Cotton’s reign over the United States of America. Though exceptionally well-versed in the economic history of cotton production, he never loses sight of the human suffering caused by slavery and its consequences.” —Niall Ferguson, Harvard University

“Dattel skillfully portrays the spaces of cotton’s kingdom, from the Mississippi Delta fields to the board rooms of New York City’s financial companies, and offers compelling evidence of the materialism that drove American life around cotton, often compromising the better angels of our nature.” —Charles Reagan Wilson, University of Mississippi

“This is an engrossing and revealing study. It should be read not just by history buffs but by all Americans who want to understand the events and forces that shaped and left their imprint on our country. The book captures with great style and intensity the overwhelming influence of cotton and slavery on our economy, finances, social behavior, and political life. Cotton and slavery prevented the formation of a more perfect union in 1776 and as the author concludes ‘America no longer needs cotton, but still bears cotton’s human legacy.’” —Henry Kaufman, economist and author, On Money and Markets

“Gene Dattel turns economic history into a gripping narrative, in this sweeping synthesis of an important but underappreciated chapter in the American past. From Whitney’s gin to the mechanical picker, Dattel shows just how close the links have been between King Cotton and the race issue. This book is highly recommended.” —Gavin Wright, Stanford University


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