Nicolaus Mills

Nicolaus Mills is professor of American studies at Sarah Lawrence College and author of Winning the Peace: The Marshall Plan and America’s Coming of Age as a Superpower.

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About the Election

There is something fundamentally wrong in the country, and the country knows it. It is not that families sit around the dinner table talking about deindustrialization and federal deficits and the new underclass. It is rather that people feel what … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

Heard and Unheard Speeches

It was not the speech Martin Luther King planned to give. He wanted his contribution to the March on Washington to be brief, “sort of a Gettysburg Address.” He would, he knew, be following a long list of speakers. A … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

Madison Avenue in the Reagan Twilight

The sun is barely up when the old man taps on the McDonald’s door. “We’re open in a few minutes, sir,” a young countergirl answers. The old man points to the McDonald’s cap he is carrying. He is the “new … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

Howard Beach–Anatomy of a Lynching

The New Park Pizzeria in Howard Beach, Queens, is not a place you go to if you’re looking for trouble. It’s too small and too neat, and so close to Cross Bay Boulevard, the main street in Howard Beach, that … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

Mississippi Summer – 1964

I n the summer of 1964 July was “Hospitality Month” in Mississippi. But as the volunteers and staff of the Mississippi Summer Project began settling into the countryside, what they found waiting for them was, as one volunteer put it, … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

P-9 Fights the Odds

AUSTIN, MINNESOTA: 6:15 and they have at last dropped off the wood for the fire barrels. But until the sun comes up, nothing is going to be enough to keep us warm. The picket lines left the Austin Labor Center … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

War in Tug River Valley

Drive down Route 49 as it takes you through the coalfields of southern West Virginia and into Kentucky, and what catches your eye before anything else is the beauty of the land. Even in the late summer the trees are … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

At First Glance

When the Selma crisis began, 20 years ago this spring, the country was ready for it. Before Selma there had been the Woolworth sit-ins, the freedom rides, and in 1964 the Mississippi Summer Project. By the time Selma began, the … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

The New American Grandeur

For a while it seemed as if it would take less than a decade to put Vietnam behind us. It was not just that we had finally signed a peace treaty with North Vietnam, but that debate over the war had ceased to be … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills

Reaganizing Hollywood

In 1983 Ronald Reagan did as president what he had never been able to do as an actor—he had a significant impact on the movie industry. Not that the president got the Reagan equivalent of PT-109 produced or that his … {…}

By Nicolaus Mills
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