Promises to Keep, 3rd Edition

  • Paul S. Boyer University of Wisconsin
  • ISBN-10: 061843383X  |  ISBN-13: 9780618433834
  • 560 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 1999, 1995
  • © 2005 | Published
  • List Price = $ 152.95
  • For quantity discounts, Contact your Representative
  • For single copy purchases, visit



Designed for the "U.S. Since 1945" course, this comprehensive survey presents the World War II experience as a backdrop for understanding recent developments and events in American history. The text features four principal, interwoven themes: the pervasive impact of the Cold War; the effects of social-protest movements among African Americans, women, and other groups; the sources and impact of economic, demographic, and cultural changes; and a thorough examination of politics.

Table of Contents

I. The American Century
1. Crucible of Change: World War II and the Forging of Modern America
2. "Not Since Rome and Carthage": Into the Cold War
3. Uneasiness at Dawn: Domestic Trends in the Early Postwar Years
4. Modern Republicanism and Suburban Togetherness in the 1950s
II. Dissent, Terror, Reform
5. The Other Side of the Picture Window: Outsiders, Dissidents, and Critics in the 1950s
6. The Cold War Heats Up: From Sputnik to Vietnam
7. The Liberal Hour
8. The Civil-Rights Movement at Flood Tide
III. The Loss of Innocence
9. Radicalization: Black Power, the New Left, and the Counterculture
10. Out of Control: War in Vietnam, Protest at Home
11. 1968 and the Nixon Years
12. Reform in the Nation, Crisis in Washington
IV. Setbacks, Achievements, New Dangers
13. Picking Up the Pieces: Post-Watergate America
14. Prime-Time Politics: The Reagan-Bush Years
15. America at the Turn of the Century: Prosperity, Scandal, a Changing Society
16. A Sea of Troubles, Glimmers of Promise, as a New Century Dawns

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Paul S. Boyer

Paul S. Boyer, Merle Curti Professor of History Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, earned his Ph.D. from Harvard University. An editor of NOTABLE AMERICAN WOMEN, 1607-1950 (1971), he also co-authored SALEM POSSESSED: THE SOCIAL ORIGINS OF WITCHCRAFT (1974), for which, with Stephen Nissenbaum, he received the John H. Dunning Prize of the American Historical Association. His other works include URBAN MASSES AND MORAL ORDER IN AMERICA, 1820-1920 (1978), BY THE BOMB’S EARLY LIGHT: AMERICAN THOUGHT AND CULTURE AT THE DAWN OF THE ATOMIC AGE (1985), WHEN TIME SHALL BE NO MORE: PROPHECY BELIEF IN MODERN AMERICAN CULTURE (1992), and PROMISES TO KEEP: THE UNITED STATES SINCE WORLD WAR II (3e, 2003). He is also editor-in-chief of the OXFORD COMPANION TO UNITED STATES HISTORY (2001). His articles and essays have appeared in the “American Quarterly,” “New Republic,” and other journals. He has been a visiting professor at the University of California, Los Angeles; Northwestern University; and the College of William and Mary.