Reaganland: America's Right Turn 1976-1980

Reaganland: America's Right Turn 1976-1980 Review

From the bestselling author of Nixonland and Invisible Bridge comes a complex portrait of President Ronald Reagan that charts the rise of the modern conservative brand unlike ever before.

After chronicling America’s transformation from a center-left to center-right nation for two decades, Rick Perlstein now focuses on the tumultuous life of President Ronald Reagan from 1976–1980. Within the book’s four-year time frame, Perlstein touches on themes of confluence as he discusses the four stories that define American politics up to the age of Trump.

There is the rise of a newly aggressive corporate America diligently organizing to turn back the liberal tide: powerful unions, environmentalism, and unprecedentedly suffusing regulation. There is the movement of political mobilized conservative Christians, organizing to reverse the cultural institutionalization of the 1960s insurgencies. Third, there is the war for the Democratic Party, transformed under Jimmy Carter as a vehicle promoting “austerity” and “sacrifice”—a turn that spurs a counter-reaction from liberal forces who go to war with Carter to return the party to its populist New Deal patrimony. And finally, there is the ascendency of Ronald Reagan, considered washed up after his 1976 defeat for the Republican nomination and too old to run for president in any event, who nonetheless dramatically emerges as the heroic embodiment of America’s longing to transcend the 1970s dark storms—from Love Canal to Jonestown, John Wayne Gacy to the hostages in Iran.

Hailed as “the chronicler extraordinaire of American conservatism” (Politico), Perlstein explores the complex years of Ronald Reagan’s presidency offering new and timely insights to issues that still remain relevant today.

Title:Reaganland: America's Right Turn 1976-1980
Edition Language:English

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    Reaganland: America's Right Turn 1976-1980 Reviews

  • Peter (Pete) Mcloughlin

    Perlstein's fourth book on Movement conservatism's takeover of American politics from Goldwater to Reagan. This last chapter of the story is just recent enough for my political memory. Perlstein captu...

  • Christopher Saunders

    Rick Perlstein’s fourth and presumably final look at the rise of American conservatism, Reaganland is a towering monument both to conservative triumph and liberal folly. Picking up where his last vo...

  • Mehrsa

    I have read all of the Perlstein books--Goldwater, Nixon, and now Reagan. I loved Nixonland and I think about it all the time. This one was not great for me. First off, it was so so long--I think unne...

  • Perry

    I now feel much more informed about some of the political and social origins of the shambolic U.S. presidency of 2020. And, regarding how the hell it has come to pass that my former beloved GOP party ...

  • Matt

    Reaganland ends Rick Perlstein’s four volume history on the rise of modern conservatism in American politics with looking at how the former actor and governor became the embodiment of the 1980s. Beg...

  • David Snower

    With the switch from Carter to Reagan our country fucked up. Just to give a sense of the change—Carter was (of course) the humble peanut farmer who didn’t have enough money to stay at hotels durin...

  • Neil Griffin

    Perlstein wrote 4 enthralling books for this project that shows why our country is currently a political hellscape and we're all probably going to die soon. This last one, which shows Reagan's 1980 tr...

  • Chip Douglass

    A old gaffe-prone celebrity with a hazy command of the facts harnesses right-wing disaffection to a plutocratic agenda and wins the presidency against a dull Democratic candidate who hardly anyone see...

  • John Spiller

    I do not have the mental bandwith to do justice to this door stopper of a book. If you have not read Perlstein's three other books in this series, I do not recommend starting with this book. I mean, i...

  • Adam Swift

    One minor quibble. Typos. Feels like this may have been rushed out to take advantage of the election without a final proofreading run. I know this is a massive book, but have never read a book by a ma...