American philanthropy today expands knowledge, champions social movements, defines active citizenship, influences policymaking, and addresses humanitarian crises. How did philanthropy become such a powerful and integral force in American society? Philanthropy in America is the first book to explore in depth the twentieth-century growth of this unique phenomenon. Ranging from the influential large-scale foundations established by tycoons such as John D. Rockefeller, Sr., and the mass mobilization of small donors by the Red Cross and March of Dimes, to the recent social advocacy of individuals like Bill Gates and George Soros, respected historian Olivier Zunz chronicles the tight connections between private giving and public affairs, and shows how this union has enlarged democracy and shaped history. Demonstrating that America has cultivated and relied on philanthropy more than any other country, Philanthropy in America examines how giving for the betterment of all became embedded in the fabric of the nation's civic democracy.
Olivier Zunz is the Commonwealth Professor of History at the University of Virginia. He is the author of Why the American Century?, Making America Corporate, and The Changing Face of Inequality.
Acknowledgments ix Preface to the Paperback Edition ix Introduction 1 Chapter 1: "For the Improvement of Mankind" 8 Chapter 2: The Coming of Mass Philanthropy 44 Chapter 3: The Regulatory Compromise 76 Chapter 4: The Private Funding of Affairs of State 104 Chapter 5: From Humanitarianism to Cold War 137 Chapter 6: Philanthropy at Midcentury: "Timid Billions"? 169 Chapter 7: Investing in Civil Rights 201 Chapter 8: In Search of a Nonprofit Sector 232 Chapter 9: American Philanthropy and the World's Communities 264 Conclusion 294 Notes 301 Index 351