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Social Policy in the United States:
Future Possibilities in Historical Perspective
Theda Skocpol

Paperback | 1996 | $49.95 / £34.95 | ISBN: 9780691037851
328 pp. | 6 x 9 | 3 figures, 2 tables

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Health care, welfare, Social Security, employment programs--all are part of ongoing national debates about the future of social policy in the United States. In this wide-ranging collection of essays, Theda Skocpol shows how historical understanding, centered on governmental institutions and political alliances, can illuminate the limits and possibilities of American social policymaking both past and present. Skocpol dispels the myth that Americans are inherently hostile to social spending and suggests why President Clinton's health care agenda was so quickly attacked despite the support of most Americans for his goals.


"An important, provocative, and often persuasive argument."--Choice


"Social Policy in the United States bears out Skocpol's reputation as the preeminent scholar of the history of social policymaking in the United States. This timely publication provides a number of important insights from historical inquiry on the limits and possibilities of current social policymaking."--William Julius Wilson, University of Chicago

"Theda Skocpol's brilliant essays on the development of American social policy quickly became classics as they were published separately over the last decade or so. Now she has brought them together in a book that will be invaluable to scholars and policymakers alike."--Alan Brinkley, Professor of History, Columbia University

"Theda Skocpol has become the sociological analyst of the sources of American social policy. Her new book is must reading for anyone who seeks to understand the way in which we are different from Europe."--Seymour Martin Lipset, Hazel Chair of Public Policy, George Mason University, and Senior Fellow, The Hoover Institution

"Of exceptional interest in Theda Skocpol's work is her ability to combine the perspectives of historian, sociologist, and political scientist to illuminate difficult problems of political development. Her explanations of the peculiar evolution of the American welfare state are valuable not only for students and scholars but for all those who wish to learn from the past to make wiser policy choices for the future."--Derek Bok, The 300th Anniversary University Professor, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University

"This will be an important book with a wide audience . . . Skocpol has deliberately moved back and forth across the line separating political sociology from social policy analysis, a constructive move that enriches both areas."--Frederick Block, University of California, Davis

Table of Contents

Other Princeton books authored or coauthored by Theda Skocpol:


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Hardcover published in 1995

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    File created: 3/10/2015

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