Detroit: a biography

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Publisher:
Varies, see individual formats and editions
Pub. Date:
2012
Language:
English
Description

Detroit was established as a French settlement three-quarters of a century before the founding of this nation. A remote outpost built to protect trapping interests, it grew as agriculture expanded on the new frontier. Its industry took a great leap forward with the completion of the Erie Canal, which opened up the Great Lakes to the East Coast. Surrounded by untapped natural resources, Detroit turned iron from the Mesabi Range into stoves and railcars, and eventually cars by the millions. This vibrant commercial hub attracted businessmen and labor organizers, European immigrants and African Americans from the rural South. At its mid-20th-century heyday, one in six American jobs were connected to the auto industry, its epicenter in Detroit. And then the bottom fell out.

Detroit: A Biography takes a long, unflinching look at the evolution of one of America’s great cities, and one of the nation’s greatest urban failures. It tells how the city grew to become the heart of American industry and how its utter collapse—from 1.8 million residents in 1950 to 714,000 only six decades later—resulted from a confluence of public policies, private industry decisions, and deep, thick seams of racism. And it raises the question: when we look at modern-day Detroit, are we looking at the ghost of America’s industrial past or its future?

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ISBN:
9781481589895
148158989
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Grouping Information

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full_title detroit
author martelle scott
grouping_category book
lastUpdate 2017-08-18 04:52:41AM

Solr Details

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auth_author2 Hughes, William, 1957-
author Martelle, Scott, 1958-
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display_description When we think of Detroit, we think first of the auto industry and its slow, painful decline, then maybe the sounds of Motown, or the long line of professional sports successes. But economies are made up of people, and the effect of the economic downfall of Detroit is one of the most compelling stories in America. Detroit: A Biography by journalist and author Scott Martelle is about a city that rose because of the most American of traits-innovation, entrepreneurship, and an inspiring perseverance. It's about the object lessons learned from the city's collapse, and most prosaically, it's about what happens when a nation turns its back on its own citizens. The story of Detroit encompasses compelling human dimensions, from the hope it once posed for blacks fleeing slavery in the early 1800s and then rural Southern poverty in the 1920s, to the American Dream it represented for waves of European immigrants eager to work in factories bearing the names Ford, Chrysler, and Chevrolet. Martelle clearly encapsulates an entire city, past and present, through the lives of generations of individual citizens. The tragic story truly is a biography, for the city is nothing without its people.
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subject_facet African Americans -- Michigan -- Detroit -- History, Detroit (Mich.) -- Economic conditions, Detroit (Mich.) -- History, Detroit (Mich.) -- Population
target_audience Adult
target_audience_full Adult
title Detroit a biography
title_display Detroit
title_full Detroit A Biography, Detroit [electronic resource] : a biography / Scott Martelle
title_short Detroit
title_sort Detroit A Biography
title_sub a biography
topic History, Nonfiction
topic_facet History, Nonfiction