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The Hardhat Riot : Nixon, New York City, and the dawn of the white working-class revolution / David Paul Kuhn.

Kuhn, David Paul, (author.).

Available copies

  • 5 of 5 copies available at Bibliomation. (Show)
  • 1 of 1 copy available at Ridgefield Library.

Current holds

0 current holds with 5 total copies.

Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Ridgefield Library 363.323 KUHN (Text to phone) 34010148118689 Adult Nonfiction Available -

Record details

  • ISBN: 0190064714 : HRD
  • ISBN: 9780190064716 : HRD
  • ISBN: 9780190064716
  • ISBN: 0190064714
  • Physical Description: vi, 404 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
  • Publisher: New York, NY : Oxford University Press, [2020]

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Formatted Contents Note:
Backdrop. "Out for blood" -- The revolutionaries of Grand Central and Columbia -- Chicago '68 -- Two moratorium days -- "Law and order" and the decline of cities -- The political fallout of "law and order" -- Blue-collar whites are "rediscovered" (in middle American Gotham) -- Those who did the fighting and dying -- The new Left and the "great test for Liberals" -- Building the Twin Towers, ethnic New York, and race -- Cambodia and Kent State -- Kent State shakes New York -- "Bloody Friday." "U-S-A. all the way!" -- Melee -- "About time the silent majority made some noise" -- Violence becomes "contagious" -- "We've lost control!" -- The riot spreads -- "I'm not having City Hall taken over on my watch" -- Full circle to Federal Hall -- Afterward and Aftermath. The days after: Knicks Utopia, a fraught city, and Nixon at the brink -- The riot reverberates -- "Workers' Woodstock" -- "Our people now": Nixon sees a future in an un-silent majority -- Honor America Day -- "Born with a potmetal spoon": Nixon launches the GOP's blue-collar strategy -- How America(s) saw it -- The end of the beginning.
Summary, etc.:
"In May 1970, four days after Kent State, construction workers chased students through downtown Manhattan, beating scores of protesters bloody. As hardhats clashed with hippies, it soon became clear that something larger was underway- Democrats were at war with themselves. In The Hardhat Riot, David Paul Kuhn tells the fateful story of when the white working class first turned against liberalism, when Richard Nixon seized the breach, and America was forever changed. It was unthinkable one generation before: FDR's "forgotten man" siding with the party of Big Business and, ultimately, paving the way for presidencies from Ronald Reagan to Donald Trump. This is the story of the schism that tore liberalism apart. In this riveting story- rooted in meticulous research, including thousands of pages of never-before-seen records- we go back to a harrowing day that explains the politics of today. We experience an emerging class conflict between two newly polarized Americas,m and how it all boiled over on one brutal day, when the Democratic Part's future was bludgeoned by its past."-- book jacket
"I am seeking to rescue the poor stockinger, the Luddite cropper, the "obsolete" hand-loom weaver, the "utopian" artisan, and even the deluded . . . from the enormous condescension of posterity. Their crafts and traditions may have been dying. Their hostility to the new industrialism may have been backward-looking. Their communitarian ideals may have been fantasies. Their insurrectionary conspiracies may have been foolhardy. But they lived through these times of acute social disturbance, and we did not. Their aspirations were valid in terms of their own experience. - E. P. Thompson, The Making of the English Working Class They arrived in waves, in colored hard hats and worn steel-toed boots, shouldering American flags, thundering, "U-S-A. All the way," intent on confronting antiwar demonstrators on Wall Street. Police rushed to form a human chain and separate the two factions. Hippies chanted, "Peace now!" Hardhats shot back, "Love it or leave it!" The student protestors pushed forward and shouted their opposition to the "fucking war." They expected it to be a matter of words. They had been told "the police are here to protect us." Then, in the same place where George Washington was inaugurated, the construction workers charged and the police did not protect them. The hardhats plowed through thousands, swinging their fists wildly, fighting to raise American flags. Students tripped and screamed and flailed for escape. For hours, they ran for their lives "like a cattle stampede." Young people were pulled from melees by their hair. Others were found unconscious and prone in the dirty streets. By the time the police realized the scope of the riot, the mob was too large and the cops were too few. City Hall was now under siege. Two liberalisms collided that day, presaging the long Democratic civil war ahead, and revealing a rupture expanding across the American landscape, a divide that had grown so vast it seemed unbridgeable by the time elites noticed, unless one looked back and understood how it all began. An earthquake only feels like an aberration. We know otherwise, of course. It's the consequence of vast plates that move with glacial time, mere millimeters a year, yet build mountains and carve oceans. Normally, these plates pass one another with friction so minimal it doesn't register in our lives. But sometimes too much sub-terrain stress amasses and the plates get stuck, frequently where the strain has long collected-that is, a fault-line. Then the new pressure rises. The force exceeds what bonds the plates together. Blocks of crust collide and some fall. The fault-line ruptures and the land shakes. In 2016, the Democratic nominee performed worse with working-class whites than any other nominee, of either party, since the Second World War. Yet before that fateful campaign, we had arrived at a place where the party of the workingman relied most on the allegiance of educated whites, and the party of big business depended on working-class whites. Years later, even well-informed Americans still struggled to consider all he exposed-the fragility of our norms, that American culture and politics rest upon corroded depths. What revealed that corrosion, and shook American life afterward, was not detached from history. It was the consequence of a tectonic break a half-century ago. May 1970 was a tumultuous month in a tumultuous era. After Cambodia and Kent State, the antiwar movement revived and radicalized as never before. Even after impeachment, Richard Nixon recalled these weeks as some of the most traumatic of his presidency. His expansion of the war into Cambodia caused a cascade of events that brought much of the nation to the brink, and Nixon with it-until, as William Safire put it, the hardhats helped "turn the tide." Those raging most against the war were not only college students, they tended to also hale from suburban affluence. They were the educated youth who ushered in the counterculture, who believed in men by the name of Gene McCarthy, John Lindsay, and George McGovern. They were also a class apart from most soldiers over there. About three in four Vietnam veterans were blue collar whites, boys of the lower middle-class and poorer backgrounds. Vietnam, unlike any war since at least the Civil War, asked the most of those who came from less. New York was still a blue-collar city at the dawn of the 1970s. The deindustrialization of America had hit it early and hard. The consequences for the city forecasted those for America. For a time, New York staved off the worst. There was a roaring national economy, a stock market bubble, a "Second Skyscraper Age." That building renaissance promised to remake downtown. Thousands of tradesmen and laborers crowded into Lower Manhattan for the work, including building two colossal towers"-- Provided by publisher.
Subject: Riots > New York (State) > New York > History > 20th century.
Anti-war demonstrations > New York (State) > New York > History > 20th century.
Student protesters > Violence against > New York (State) > New York > History > 20th century.
Construction workers > New York (State) > New York > History > 20th century.
Social conflict > New York (State) > New York > History > 20th century.
United States > Social conditions > 1960-1980.
United States > History > 1969-

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