American Decades documents and analyzes periods of contemporary American social history. Each volume begins with an overview and chronology covering the entire decade. Subject chapters follow, each including an explanatory background overview; subject-specific timeline; and alphabetically arranged entries discussing the people, events and ideas important to that subject during the period. Included are biographies; explanations of concepts; terms and events; quotations; charts; sidebars covering high-interest topics; and much more.
Praise from Mencken: "There are pages so artfully contrived that one can no more imagine improvising them than one can imagine improvising a fugue. They are full of little delicacies; charming turns of phrase, penetrating second thoughts. In other words, they are easy and excellent reading — which is what always comes out of hard writing."