- “Dodging Decarceration: The Shell Game of ‘Getting Smart’ on Crime.” Huffington Post. July 9, 2014
- “Rescuing America’s Inner Cities? Detroit and the Perils of Private Policing.” Huffington Post. June 25, 2014
- “Empire State disgrace: The dark, secret history of the Attica Prison tragedy.” (Salon.com May 25, 2014)
- “Writing the Perilously Recent Past: The Historian’s dilemma.” (Perspectives. The American Historical Association. October, 2013.)
- “How Prisons Have Changed the Balance of Power in America.” (The Atlantic. October, 2013)
- “Why Mass Incarceration Matters: Rethinking Crisis, Decline, and Transformation in Postwar American History.” (Journal of American History, December 2010),
- ”Downsizing the Carceral State: The Policy Implications of Prisoner Guard Unions” (Criminology and Public Policy, August, 2011)
- “Rethinking Working Class Struggle through the Lens of the Carceral State: Toward a Labor History of Inmates and Guards (Labor: Working Class Studies of the Americas, Fall, 2011)
- “Criminalizing the Kids: The Overlooked Reason for our Failing Schools.” (Dissent, October, 2011).
- The Prison Industrial Complex: A Growth Industry in a Shrinking Economy (New Labor Forum, Fall, 2012); Response: Scott to Thompson (New Labor Forum, Spring, 2013); Reply: Thompson to Scott (New Labor Forum, Spring, 2013)
- “The Lingering Injustice of Attica.” (New York Times, September 9, 2011)
Recent Chapters in Books:
- “From Researching the Past to Reimagining the Future: Locating Carceral Crisis and the Key to its End in the Long Twentieth Century.” in Deborah McDowell, Claudrena Harold, and Juan Battle, ed. The Punitive Turn: New Approaches to Race and Incarceration. (University of Virginia Press, 2013)
- “Criminalizing the Kids: The Overlooked Reason for Failing Schools” in Michael Katz and Michael Rose, ed. Public Education Under Siege (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013).
- “Blinded by a “Barbaric” South: Prison Horrors, Inmate Abuse and the Ironic History of Penal Reform in the Postwar United States” in Matthew Lassiter and Joseph Crespino, ed. The End of Southern History? (Oxford University Press, 2009)
Thompson, Whose Detroit: Politics, Labor, and Race in a Modern American City (Cornell University Press, 2000)
From Library Journal:
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
- “A valuable addition to literature on race, labor, and urban life in postwar America. Whose Detroit? identifies the crucial link between shop floor and labor union issues, on the one hand, and broader urban political developments on the other.”-Robert H. Zieger, University of Florida”Heather Thompson uncovers as few others have the rich variety of black community and workplace organizations in Detroit in the 1960s and 1970s. Her effort to show the different responses of city leaders and union leaders to racial issues challenges the tendency either to merge these two groups or to overlook the distinctions between them.”-Nancy Gabin, Purdue University
- “Heather Thompson powerfully rewrites the narrative of the collapse of late-sixties liberalism and of the liberal/labor alliance. The 1967 riots were a turning point in the history of the Detroit Left, perhaps the most important radical community in the country during this period. Rather than accept the riots as a product of rising black militancy, impatience, and scapegoating of ‘whitey,’ Thompson argues that they played a key role in the ascendance of the Black Power movement.”-Robin D. G. Kelley, New York University
- “Thompson. . . uses Detroit in the 1960s and early 1970s to consider how the battles for civil and workers rights have shaped American cities. . . There’s plenty here for readers eager to think deeply about our hometown’s challenges.”-Marta Salij, Detroit Free Press, 11/26/01
- “Thompson illuminates themes of race, labor, and politics in Detroit’s history during the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, revealing much about the interplay of forces central to American life. . . . Thompson presents a vivid portrait of key courtroom battles against racial injustice. . . . This first-rate contribution to a better understanding of the dynamics shaping US cities captures the flavor and drama of the Detroit struggle. All levels and collections.”–-Choice, September 2002
- “Thompson has spent much of her adult life researching Detroit’s recent history. The result is a book that describes how a ferocious battle for control of the city took place after the 1967 riot. Her conclusion: White conservatives lost. Black liberals won.”-Bill McGraw, Motor City Journal, March 22, 2002
- “The author presents a study of social conflict in Detroit in the 1960s and 1970s, which remained unabated despite a massive infusion of Great Society programs.”-Business Horizons, January-February 2003
- “Thompson’s study is a triumph of social and political history. She connects in a most engaging style events on the street, the factory floor, and the courtroom, and convincingly shows the political realignments that have remade Detroit.”-John F. Lyons, Joliet Junior College, Labour/Le Travail
Thompson. ed., Speaking Out: Activism and Protest in the 1960′s and 1970′s (Prentice Hall, 2009)
Speaking Out : Activism and Protest in the 1960s and 1970s is a collection of readings about 21 different activist movements that came of age in the 60s and 70s. Introductions written by recognized scholars who have studied and written about these movements in depth begin each chapter, followed by primary source documents that provide insight into each movement. The chapters not only offer a comprehensive overview of the most important social and political activist groups of these two decades, but they also locate each group’s complex origins, strengths, weaknesses, and legacy. As these authors make clear, ultimately the activist groups of this period each had their share of successes and each made their share of mistakes and miscalculations. Thus, together, they left a most complicated legacy for future generations.