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workshop reflections

Summer Institute

World War II Bibliography:

For web links, see

Adams, Michael C. C. The Best War Ever: America and World War II. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994.
All the bad news about World War II.

Albrecht, Donald, ed. World War II and the American Dream. Washington, D.C.: National Building Museum and Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1995.
Very helpful essays showing the wartime origins of postwar consumerism.

Brinkley, David. Washington Goes to War. New York: A.A. Knopf: Distributed by Random House, 1988.
A local view of the home front.

Chalberg, John C. Isolationism : Opposing Viewpoints. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 1995.
Designed as a textbook. A good selection of primary documents.

Cohen, Lizabeth. A Consumers’ Republic: The Politics of Mass Consumption in Postwar America. New York: Knopf, 2003.
Consumption as citizenship, with emphasis on women and African-Americans.

Dalfiume, Richard M. “The ‘Forgotten Years’ of the Negro Revolution”. The Journal of American History 55 (1968): 90-106.
A good overview of the black experience of the home front.

Egerton, John. Speak Now Against the Day: The Generation Before the Civil Rights Movement in the South. New York: Knopf, 1994.
How Southerners of the 1930s and 1940s paved the way toward Brown vs. Board.

Goldberg, Alfred. The Pentagon: The First Fifty Years. Washington, D.C. : U.S. G.P.O, 1992.
The official history of the Pentagon, including its creation.

Hastings, Max. Armageddon: The Battle for Germany, 1944-45. New York: A.A. Knopf, 2004.
A good antidote to Stephen Ambrose’s hero-worship, and a reminder that the Red Army, not the Americans, defeated Germany.

Honey, Maureen. Creating Rosie the Riveter: Class, Gender, and Propaganda During World War II. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 1984.
An analysis of the differing messages targeted and middle-class and working-class women. Good pictures.

Iriye, Akira. Power and Culture: The Japanese-American War, 1941-1945. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1981.
The Japanese could not win, but they could not imagine surrender.

Kennedy, David M. Freedom from Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929-1945. New York Oxford University Press, 1999.
A recent, synthetic account from the American perspective. Both a compelling narrative and a good way to find more detailed works.

Kershaw, Alex. The Bedford Boys: One American Town’s Ultimate D-Day Sacrifice. Cambridge, Mass.: Da Capo Press, 2003.
Mostly about life in uniform, but includes a good portrait of the town of Bedford, Virginia, which lost 19 of its young men in the first wave at Omaha Beach.

Kryder, Daniel. Divided Arsenal: Race and the American State During World War II. Cambridge, U.K. ; New York, NY : Cambridge University Press, 2000.
Somewhat clouded with political theory, but potentially helpful.

Lewis, Earl. In Their Own Interests: Race, Class, and Power in Twentieth-century Norfolk, Virginia. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991.
Includes a chapter on black Norfolk during the war.

Miksch, Karen L. and David Ghere, “Teaching Japanese-American Incarceration,” The History Teacher, February 2004.
Suggests practical exercises.

Terkel, Studs. “ The Good War”: An Oral History of World War Two. New York Pantheon Books, 1984.
The war remembered by a range of witnesses, military and civilian, Americans and others. An essential resource for students.

Weinberg, Gerhard L. A World at Arms: A Global History of World War II. 2nd ed. Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2005.
The war from a global, rather than an American, perspective.

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