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Alexander Bloom Used, justice, non-fiction

Prodigal Sons ***

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So deeply entrenched in our intellectual establishment are these people that it's easy to forget that most grew up onthe edge of American society--poor, Jewish, the children of immigrants. Prodigal Sons retraces their common past, from their New York City ghetto upbringing and education at Columbia and City College through their radicalization in the '30s to their preeminence in the postwar literary and academic world. The book examines their youthful efforts to ignore their Jewish heritage and their later rediscovery of this heritage in the wake of the Holocaust. It shows how they moved toward the liberal center during the Cold War and how the group fragmented in the 1960s, when some turned toward the right, becoming key figures in the Neo-Conservative movement of the 1970s and '80s.