Product Details

$22.00  $20.46
St. Martins Press-3PL
Publish Date
5.9 X 8.9 X 0.8 inches | 0.8 pounds

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About the Author

Ellen Wayland-Smith teaches in the Writing Program at the University of Southern California, and received her PhD. in Comparative Literature from Princeton University. A descendent of John Humphrey Noyes, the founder of the Oneida community, she lives in Los Angeles with her family. Oneida is her first book.


"A lively and often entertaining account.... In Wayland-Smith's extended chronicle, we see utopia as it sails through the world, assaulted on all sides by the forces of assimilation and greed."--The New Yorker

"Wayland-Smith is a gifted writer. Her lively account of how Oneida eventually succumbed to 'the gods of Science and Doubt' is a welcome change from most 'as told by' family histories."--The New York Times Book Review

"Remarkable... a detailed, riveting account."--The Guardian

"Lively...[Wayland-Smith's] nuanced and empathetic book vividly captures the spirit of a brief historical moment."--The Boston Globe

"[A] fascinating, beautifully-told history."--The New Republic

"An incredible story."--WBUR's Here and Now

"An intimate, quirky family portrait."--The Nation

"A gimlet-eyed book about Wayland-Smith's family history."--Gawker

"Drawing from letters, diaries, newsletters, and family stories, the author, an original-family descendant, adds inside information to this retelling of a radical movement's transformation in the shifting current of American ideals. The narrative is engaging and detailed. This is a must-read for those interested in American social history, and should have broad appeal."--Booklist (starred review)

"[An] impressively thorough and engaging work.... This book is a fascinating look into the strange history of Oneida silverware and how its origins reflect an exhilarating period of American history."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"This compelling narrative seamlessly threads the unlikely alliance between a 'free love utopia' and a household brand name. Fans of Joseph Ellis and David McCullough will appreciate this engrossing entry."--Library Journal (starred review)

"The spotlight Wayland-Smith shines on this remarkable community's beginnings and ending offers a riveting glimpse into the quintessentially American early-19th-century struggle with the rights of the individual and separation of church and state. A smartly contextualized tale of 'the tension between radical social critique and unapologetic accommodation....between communal harmony and individual striving.'"--Kirkus Reviews