The Public Interest

Alien nation

Stephan Thernstrom

Winter 1996

WHEN The Next American Nation: The New Nationalism and the Fourth American Revolution † is good, it is very, very good. But when it is bad, it is pretty horrid. Michael Lind has many perceptive things to say about issues of race, religion, and nationality in American life, the subject of roughly half of his book. Alas, when he deals with our changing economy and social structure—the subject of the other half—he is superficial, shrill, and tendentious.

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