Farrar, Straus and Giroux / Social science

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The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down

Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest 1997

by Anne Fadiman

Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction

When three-month-old Lia Lee Arrived at the county hospital emergency room in Merced, California, a chain of events was set in motion from which...


That Used to Be Us

by Thomas L. Friedman & Michael Mandelbaum

America is in trouble. We face four major challenges on which our future depends, and we are failing to meet them—and if we delay any longer, soon it will be too late for us to pass along the American dream...


On Democracy's Doorstep

by J. Douglas Smith

The inside story of the Supreme Court decisions that brought true democracy to the United States

As chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, Earl Warren is most often remembered for landmark rulings in favor...


Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China

by Evan Osnos

A vibrant, colorful, and revelatory inner history of China during a moment of profound transformation

From abroad, we often see China as a caricature: a nation of pragmatic plutocrats and ruthlessly dedicated...


War! What Is It Good For?

by Ian Morris

A powerful and provocative exploration of how war has changed our society—for the better

“War! . . . . / What is it good for? / Absolutely nothing,” says the famous song—but archaeology, history, and...


Why the Cocks Fight

by Michele Wucker

Like two roosters in a fighting arena, Haiti and the Dominican Republic are encircled by barriers of geography and poverty. They co-inhabit the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, but their histories are as deeply...


Now I Know Who My Comrades Are

by Emily Parker

In China, university students use the Internet to save the life of an attempted murder victim. In Cuba, authorities unsuccessfully try to silence an online critic by sowing seeds of distrust in her marriage....


Genesis

by John B. Judis

A probing look at one of the most incendiary subjects of our time—the relationship between the United States and Israel

There has been more than half a century of raging conflict between Jews and Arabs—a...


Down to the Crossroads

by Aram Goudsouzian

In 1962, James Meredith became a civil rights hero when he enrolled as the first African American student at the University of Mississippi. Four years later, he would make the news again when he reentered Mississippi,...


Flappers

by Judith Mackrell

By the 1920s, women were on the verge of something huge. Jazz, racy fashions, eyebrowraising new attitudes about art and sex—all of this pointed to a sleek, modern world, one that could shake off the grimness...


An Imperfect God

by Henry Wiencek

An Imperfect God is a major new biography of Washington, and the first to explore his engagement with American slavery

When George Washington wrote his will, he made the startling decision to set his slaves...


Happy City: Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design

by Charles Montgomery

A globe-trotting, eye-opening exploration of how cities can—and do—make us happier people

Charles Montgomery’s Happy City will revolutionize the way we think about urban life.

After decades of unchecked...


Front Porch Politics

by Michael Stewart Foley

An on-the-ground history of ordinary Americans who took to the streets when political issues became personal

The 1960s are widely seen as the high tide of political activism in the United States. According to...


Wonder Women

by Debora L. Spar

Fifty years after the Equal Pay Act, why are women still living in a man’s world?

Debora L. Spar never thought of herself as a feminist. Raised after the tumult of the 1960s, she presumed the gender war was...


Regarding the Pain of Others

by Susan Sontag

A brilliant, clear-eyed new consideration of the visual representation of violence in our culture--its ubiquity, meanings, and effects

Watching the evening news offers constant evidence of atrocity--a daily commonplace...


O My America!

by Sara Wheeler

In O My America!, the travel writer and biographer Sara Wheeler embarks on a journey across the United States, guided by the adventures of six women who reinvented themselves as they chased the frontier west....


Jackie Under My Skin

by Wayne Koestenbaum

Jackie Under My Skin is a nuanced description of how Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis transformed our definitions of personal identity and style. As Wayne Koestenbaum follows her into America's dreamwork, far from...


Down in the Chapel

by Joshua Dubler

A bold and provocative interpretation of one of the most religiously vibrant places in America—a state penitentiary

Baraka, Al, Teddy, and Sayyid—four black men from South Philadelphia, two Christian and...


The Sexual Revolution

by Wilhelm Reich & Theodore P. Wolfe

In this book, Wilhelm Reich summarizes the criticism of the prevailing sexual conditions and conflicts as it resulted from his sex-economic medical experiences over a period of years.  He demonstrates, by way...


People In Trouble

by Wilhelm Reich & Philip Schmitz

First published by Reich in 1953, People in Trouble is an autobiographical work in which Reich describes the development of his sociological thinking from 1927 to 1937. In simple narrative form he recounts...