New in the Center for Studies in American Culture's Center Working Papers series


Bruce Jackson, The Peace Bridge Chronicles


The bi-national public authority operating the Peace Bridge, which connects Fort Erie, Ontario, and Buffalo, New York, decided it needed more lanes. They came up with a design that was ugly, anachronistic, expensive to build and expensive to maintain, and an environmental disaster. It was a design and plan guaranteed to make a few people rich, a lot of people sick, and a lot more people unhappy. When challenged, the Authority said they didn't have to answer to anybody but themselves. They almost got away with it, but one principled judge and New York's environmental law stopped them cold, and forced them to become the kind of civic citizen they should have been all along.

This triumph of community needs over the interests of the rich and powerful have been chronicled in a series of 64 newspaper and web-magazine articles by Bruce Jackson. The articles are gathered here in the order of their initial publication. They comprise a rare public record of a critical political and social process.


Bruce Jackson is SUNY Distinguished Professor and Samuel P. Capen Professor of American Culture at University at Buffalo. He is a documentary filmmaker and the author or editor of 20 other books. In 2002, the government of France honored his ethnographic and anti-death penalty work by appointing him Chevalier, l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.


Bruce Jackson
The Peace Bridge Chronicles
563 pp.  $24.95US
Available from the Center,, Buffalo's Talking Leaves bookstores, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, and the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society.

ISBN 0-931627-04-4

Center Working Papers