The Wire (2002-2008) was a searing exploration of post-9/11 America.
It detailed the struggles of those living in America's disintegrating industrial heartlands and drug-ravaged neighborhoods, as well as those striving against the odds in its schools, hospitals and legal system.
In the shadow of 9/11, while all eyes were turned towards Afghanistan and Iraq, The Wire was one of the few attempts to show the realities of America's dark corners. Dostoevsky and Tolstoy have been evoked in discussions of The Wire, its compelling storylines and memorable cast of characters creating a level of detail previously unseen in television series.
However, while the show's scope and ambition garnered critical praise and a loyal following, a discussion of its political aspects, and in particular of the commentary it provided on Bush-era America, is overdue. The essays in this book examine The Wire in these terms, encompassing the unforseen consequences of the War on Drugs, the division of America's cities, the surveillance state, and the meaning of citizenship.
In sum, this book provides new insights into how The Wire shone a light on the hidden realities of post-9/11 America.