Cover image for Encyclopedia of the American left
Encyclopedia of the American left
Buhle, Mari Jo, 1943-
Second edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Oxford University Press, 1998.
Physical Description:
xxv, 988 pages : illustrations ; 27 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
HX86 .E58 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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This is the throughly revised, updated and expanded edition of a groundbreaking reference source--the most comprehensive guide available to the history of radical and progressive movements in America. More than 600 articles (100 new to this edition) written by 300 leading historians cover key figures, events, issues, organizations, and concepts, from Tom paine to the Black Panther Party.

Author Notes

Mari Jo Buhle, Professor of American Culture, Brown University. Paul Buhle, Director of the Oral History of the American Left at Taminent Library, New York University.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

A revised and expanded version of the first edition, which was published in 1990. There are more than 70 new articles, with expanded coverage of the arts and ethnic groups, and new coverage of pre-Civil War movements. (Reviewed March 15, 1999)

Library Journal Review

The American Left consists not just of Communists or Socialists. As illustrated in this excellent update of the original 1990 work edited by three academic historians, it contains a rich mix of political, social, and artistic movements. The 650 entries, written by scholars, artists, and activists, cover more than individuals, organizations, and publications, also venturing into such diverse areas as folk music, the disability rights movement, labor, radio, psychology, and sf and fantasy. Entries new to the second edition include "ACT-UP," "jazz," "Leonard Peltier," "Reconstruction," and the "Young Lords Party." These additions cover current events and social and cultural topics. Individual entries run from one paragraph to several pages, and all close with a brief bibliography and cross references. The new edition also contains several minor organizational changes, such as combining the separate name-subject indexes into a single index. Also included is a separate glossary of terms regularly appearing in the work, a brief bibliographic essay, and a broad subject outline of entries. All libraries with the first edition (LJ 6/15/90) need the second on its shelves. Recommended for larger academic and public libraries.√ĄStephen L. Hupp, Urbana Univ. Lib., OH (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Since first publication of this book (CH, Oct'90), the American Left has been eclipsed to some degree by advocates of conservative causes, but this revised and expanded edition gives ample evidence that the liberal tradition survives. It continues to be a comprehensive source of information about Americans who have "sought fundamental changes in the economic, political, and cultural system." The editors give greater emphasis to radicalism than to evolutionary reform. This second edition claims more than 70 new articles, each with a brief bibliography, adding essays on earlier figures (like Henry David Thoreau and Henry George) whose writing influenced the 20th-century Left, dropping a few (like Jose Marti), and adding some 20th-century figures not in the first edition (like Jessica Mitford and Tom Hayden). The format is improved: captions are more legible, the index (originally divided between subjects and personal names) is in a single alphabet, and there is a new glossary. A few articles with arcane captions (like "Health Left," "Lovestonettes," and "1919 Strike Wave") are rescued by the index. Recommended for any public or academic library. D. W. Heron; formerly, University of California