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Nicholas Lemann
Author Index

Articles currently available on The Atlantic Monthly's Web site

  • Lost in Post-Reality, January 1999
    The national entertainment state threatens to transmogrify American life into a soap opera.

  • "Ready, Read!", November 1998
    A new solution to the problem of failing public schools is emerging: takeover by outside authorities, who prescribe a standardized field-tested curriculum. This runs counter to our long-standing tradition of autonomy for local schools and teachers, but it works.

  • The Reading Wars, November 1997
    An old disagreement over how to teach children to read -- whole-language versus phonics -- has re-emerged in California, in a new form.

  • Kicking In Groups, April 1996
    Just as intriguing as Robert Putnam's theory that we are "bowling alone" -- that the bonds of civic association are dissolving -- is how readily the theory has been accepted.

  • The Great Sorting, September 1995
    The first mass administrations of a scholastic-aptitude test led with surprising speed to thd idea that the nation's leaders would be the people who did well on tests.

  • The Structure of Success in America, August 1995
    In America perhaps only race is a more sensitive subject than the way we sort ourselves out in the struggle for success. At the center of that struggle are higher education and ETS, the Educational Testing Service. Herewith an inside look at the history and workings of one of the most familiar yet least public of American institutions.

  • Philadelphia: Black Nationalism on Campus, January 1993
    Conversations with students at Penn and Temple show that black nationalism and assimilation are not the opposites they appear to be.

  • The Other Underclass, December 1991
    Most people think of inner-city poverty as a black phenomenon. But it is also alarmingly high among Puerto Ricans, the worst-off ethnic group in the country--even though Puerto Rico itself has made great progress against poverty and there is a growing Puerto Rican middle-class on the mainland.

  • The Unfinished War [Part 1], December 1988
    A product of the conflicting ambitions of the men who shaped it, the War on Poverty was ill-fated--but its fate need not be that of all anti-poverty programs.

  • The Unfinished War [Part 2], January 1989
    An inside look at how personal enmity, political calculation, and policy misjudgments prevented any effective prosecution of the War on Poverty by either Lyndon Johnson or Richard Nixon.

  • The Origins of the Underclass [Part 1], June 1986
    The flight of middle-class blacks from ghettos has left a disastrously isolated underclass--one formed less by welfare or a lack of jobs than by its rural-South heritage.

  • The Origins of the Underclass [Part 2], July 1986
    Black urban ghettos are poorer and more isolated today than they have ever been. The question remaining is how to reverse the effects of what has become a self-sustaining culture.

  • The Campaign Doctors, October 1985
    "For many years there was a strong argument political reporters could make to justify their surrender to the tides pulling them into the day-to day details of campaign strategy: these were in fact what mattered most. The presidential elections of the fifties, sixties, and seventies were seen as essentially non-ideological. When two centrists ran, it was close; when a true believer like Barry Goldwater or George McGovern got into the race, it was a runaway. So the pros' vantage point was the best one from which to view an election: how well they did their jobs really would determine the outcome."

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