Detroit once symbolized America

October 7th, 2015
ows_144198683599165.jpgEvery great city has it’s defining era.  Not always good, but certainly one that shapes its fortunes and reinforces its place in the urban pantheon.  For New York it was perhaps the 50s, for Paris the mid 1920s, for San Francisco the ‘60s and for Hollywood, certainly the 1930s.

For Detroit, the eighteen months from the fall of 1962, through the spring 1964 marked perhaps the apogee and the beginning of the downward arc of that once great city.

A city that came to personify the American experience in the second half of the 20th century.  Detroit at the time was the epicenter of music, racial strife, labor and of a middle class that now seems a bygone dream.

Capturing that moment is Pulitzer Prize winning author and journalist, and Washington Post Associate Editor David Maraniss. He captures the essence of this period in Once in a Great City: A Detroit Story.

My conversation with David Maraniss: