The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 94, July 1990 - April, 1991

Book Revzews

In the ensuing battle of press releases, newspaper accounts mostly
took the side of Perot, who, on this book's cartoon cover, wields a
slingshot, playing David to GM's Goliath. The reality was more com-
plex, involving the motives (mostly admirable) for GM's original inter-
est in EDS, the generic problem of mergers and acquisitions involving
companies such as EDS that become too prosperous too fast and re-
main wedded to unrealistic growth rates, and the overall decline of
American manufacturing as evidenced by the rise of car imports and
the erosion of GM's market share.
Doron P. Levin, the author of this highly readable account, is Detroit
bureau chief for the New York Times. The book grew out of a series of
articles he wrote during the middle 198os, principally for the Wall
Street Journal. Though not a work of scholarship, it is excellent inves-
tigative journalism. The internal evidence of the book, including ver-
batim reproductions of confidential letters and memoranda between
Perot and Roger Smith, suggests that Levin enjoyed remarkable access
to Perot. Yet in the end, Levin tilts only slightly in Perot's favor, and
overall his account rings true.
Harvard Business School THOMAS K. McCRAw
Phoenix: The History of a Southwestern Metropolis. By Bradford Lucking-
ham. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1989, Pp. xi+316.
Maps, illustrations, tables, notes, acknowledgments, index. $29.95.)
In his most recent study, Bradford Luckingham has crafted an urban
biography of a major western metropolis that is not only a much-
needed contribution to the history of the American West, but also a sig-
nificant addition to the canon of urban history. Luckingham traces the
growth of Phoenix from its modest beginnings to its current status as
a regional metropolis. He has drawn from a wide variety of archival
sources, theses and dissertations, oral histories, newspapers, promo-
tional literature, and traditional secondary works. Among the signifi-
cant issues addressed: the successes and failures of local leaders, minor-
ities and the urban experience, the role of technological innovation in
altering the urban environment, transportation developments, and the
impact of federal policies on a host of urban issues. This is urban his-
tory and regional history punctuated with lively and relevant biograph-
ical accounts of civic leaders and entrepreneurs.
According to Luckingham, from the time of its founding in 1866-
1867, to the turn of the century, Phoenix maintained steady but un-
spectacular growth. It became a service center and emerged as the most
fertile and productive agricultural area in the Arizona Territory. In
1881 its 1,700 residents incorporated as a city. In July 1887, a spur of

487

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 94, July 1990 - April, 1991. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101214/. Accessed February 27, 2015.