1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Fault Lines  By  cover art

Fault Lines

By: Kevin M. Kruse,Julian E. Zelizer
Narrated by: Fajer Al-Kaisi
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $26.05

Buy for $26.05

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Two award-winning historians explore the origins of a divided America.   

If you were asked when America became polarized, your answer would likely depend on your age: You might say during Barack Obama’s presidency, or with the post-9/11 war on terror, or the culture wars of the 1980s and 1990s, or the “Reagan Revolution” and the the rise of the New Right.   

For leading historians Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer, it all starts in 1974. In that one year, the nation was rocked by one major event after another: The Watergate crisis and the departure of President Richard Nixon, the first and only US president to resign; the winding down of the Vietnam War and rising doubts about America’s military might; the fallout from the OPEC oil embargo that paralyzed America with the greatest energy crisis in its history; and the desegregation busing riots in South Boston that showed a horrified nation that our efforts to end institutional racism were failing.   

In the years that followed, the story of our own lifetimes would be written. Longstanding historical fault lines over income inequality, racial division, and a revolution in gender roles and sexual norms would deepen and fuel a polarized political landscape. In Fault Lines, Kruse and Zelizer reveal how the divisions of the present day began almost five decades ago and how they were widened thanks to profound changes in our political system as well as a fracturing media landscape that was repeatedly transformed with the rise of cable TV, the internet, and social media.   

How did the US become so divided? Fault Lines offers a richly told, wide-angle history view toward an answer.

©2019 Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer (P)2019 Audible, Inc.
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

Critic Reviews

"Listeners over 50 will enjoy this review of the major political and cultural changes that have occurred during their lifetime - from the resignation of Nixon to the improbable ascendance of Trump. Narrator Fajer Al-Kaisi is a capable guide who moves the audiobook along at a brisk and confident pace." (AudioFile Magazine)

What listeners say about Fault Lines

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    202
  • 4 Stars
    82
  • 3 Stars
    42
  • 2 Stars
    15
  • 1 Stars
    7
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    190
  • 4 Stars
    79
  • 3 Stars
    18
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    5
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    175
  • 4 Stars
    73
  • 3 Stars
    23
  • 2 Stars
    16
  • 1 Stars
    4

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good overview of the past 45 years

History and the tools of the historian are important to understanding both history and how we got to the place where we are. Kruse and Zelizer are writing a recent history with their tools as historians. I was born in 1973, the year before this really starts and so it was a helpful, especially for the first 20-25 years old where I have some memory but not as much context as I do about the more recent history. Fault Lines is a brief overview of the past 45 years focusing on the polarization that is a result of increasing diversity and increasing cultural and political power of women, racial minorities and LGBT people and the backlash against those changes. That framing I think is helpful, but incomplete. But I am also not sure how to be more complete without the book ballooning to a thousand pages. 

There is lots of information that I had either forgotten or did not know. But this is a fairly introductory overview.  From what I understand, it is based on an undergrad class that the authors teach at Princeton. In areas where I have a bit more knowledge the gloss I think is a bit superficial in places. 

What I appreciate is both the readability and the role that pop culture and tech play in the history. The pop culture and tech are not fluff, they really do play an important role in politics and history of the late 20th and early 21st century.  

I also appreciate that the book is working at giving a complex picture of the subjects of the book. Few characters are presented in a solely positive or negative light. In particular I think Carter and Bush Sr are given more credit for their roles, which I think is where historians generally are moving. And Reagan and Clinton are approached more critically. It does make me want to read more about the Carter and Bush Sr presidencies. (I picked up President Carter: The White House Years last week when it was on sale and will read eventually.)

I listened to this on audiobook and the narration was fine. But the narrator kept trying to almost do voice impressions of well known politicians. The impressions were enough to be annoying but not enough to be really accurate. I would have preferred that the quotes have been read straight. 

23 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

A chronology without perspective

I don' t like it when historians crowd history with their bias and interpretation but this book went too far in the other direction. We have a chronology of events without any real perspective. I was disappointed by the end and much prefer the book, The Unwinding, to cover a lot of the same material but toward a reasonable interpretation at the end.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Authors are employees of the Democratic Party

The coverage of Obama,s Presidency showed only how the Republicans did not buy into his wonderful bipartisan ideas and thereby ruined his image. Everything he tried to do was wonderful but Republicans shot it down. Gee, this sounds exactly like what the Democrats are presently doing to Trump... Clinton did nothing wrong in Benghazi incident and had no part in what might have caused it. I was surprised Donna Rice was not mentioned. I could hear the authors tears during the description of the election night results.

Difficult to gag down this Democratic rhetoric.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Liberal bias

Do not expect an impartial history. This book has a clear liberal bias that you can recognize, but not ignore.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good review of events

It's a history book. Not an interpretation of events. If you're looking for insight, it will have to come from within yourself. :)

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Headlines Headlines Headlines

this book did not have such great analysis. instead it was largely filled with headlines, and the analysis was thin.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Slanted!

Great recap of history from1974 to the present . Deeper into the book, the authors slant to the left is too obvious which distracts from the story .

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent! Fair and balanced

Provides a survey of key political, economic, cultural, and news/entertainment media changes in the US since the resignation of US President Richard Nixon. The author presents his opinion of the impacts on internal US politics following each major shift. Highly recommended!

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Required reading

Honestly, who amongst us ever learned anything about history and 1974. What a wonderful resource for tying in recent and current societal changes and political forces. An excellent read.
I was a bit put off by the narrators voice. A bit monotone, but seriously, the writing and content speaks for itself.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

A totally biased book

If you want to know leftist views this is a great research book. I listened to every word and gained much insight. I highly recommend it.

5 people found this helpful