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"A natural companion to James Climent¿s more thematically structured Encyclopedia of the Great Depression and the New Deal, this ambitious work contains 542 alphabetically arranged articles covering subjects like politics, literature, sports, law, science, industry, economics, religion, and art. Accompanied by some 300 to 5000 words in length and include spare bibliographies. An A-to-Z list of articles, a listing of the 270 specialists with their academic postings together with their contribution, and a summary of essay titles under broad topical headers all precede the main body of the book. McElvaine (The Great Depression: America 1929-1941) provides an interesting array of biographical sketches throughout, profiling such figures as Al Capone, Walt Disney, Amelia Earhart, Woody Guthrie, Joe Louis, Paul Robeson, and scores of others. The work's strength centers on social history and gender/race-related issues. As with all edited works, there are a few examples of overlap and unevenness. In the contents outline, the editors include a general category for the Left, but nothing for the Right. Bottom Line: Despite its flaws, this work is essential for all high school, college, and public libraries because of its impressive scope."--Library Journal (July 2004)
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