#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • An intimate and revealing portrait of civil rights icon and longtime U.S. congressman John Lewis, linking his life to the painful quest for justice in America from the 1950s to the present—from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Soul of America NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST AND COSMOPOLITAN John Lewis, who at age twenty-five marched in Selma, Alabama, and was beaten on the Edmund Pettus Bridge, was a visionary and a man of faith. Drawing on decades of wide-ranging interviews with Lewis, Jon Meacham writes of how this great-grandson of a slave and son of an Alabama tenant farmer was inspired by the Bible and his teachers in nonviolence, Reverend James Lawson and Martin Luther King, Jr., to put his life on the line in the service of what Abraham Lincoln called “the better angels of our nature.” From an early age, Lewis learned that nonviolence was not only a tactic but a philosophy, a biblical imperative, and a transforming reality. At the age of four, Lewis, ambitious to become a minister, practiced by preaching to his family’s chickens. When his mother cooked one of the chickens, the boy refused to eat it—his first act, he wryly recalled, of nonviolent protest. Integral to Lewis’s commitment to bettering the nation was his faith in humanity and in God—and an unshakable belief in the power of hope. Meacham calls Lewis “as important to the founding of a modern and multiethnic twentieth- and twenty-first-century America as Thomas Jefferson and James Madison and Samuel Adams were to the initial creation of the Republic itself in the eighteenth century.” A believer in the injunction that one should love one's neighbor as oneself, Lewis was arguably a saint in our time, risking limb and life to bear witness for the powerless in the face of the powerful. In many ways he brought a still-evolving nation closer to realizing its ideals, and his story offers inspiration and illumination for Americans today who are working for social and political change.

Author ,
Isbn 1984855034
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2020-08-25
Pages 384
Language English
File format PDF

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Pulitzer Prize–winning author Jon Meacham explores the seven last sayings of Jesus as recorded in the Gospels, combining rich historical and theological insights to reflect on the true heart of the Christian story. For Jon Meacham, as for believers worldwide, the events of Good Friday and Easter reveal essential truths about Christianity. A former vestryman of Trinity Church Wall Street and St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, Meacham delves into that intersection of faith and history in this meditation on the seven phrases Jesus spoke from the cross. Beginning with “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do” and ending with “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit,” Meacham captures for the reader how these words epitomize Jesus’s message of love, not hate; grace, not rage; and, rather than vengeance, extraordinary mercy. For each saying, Meacham composes an essay on the origins of Christianity and how Jesus’s final words created a foundation for oral and written traditions that upended the very order of the world. Writing in a tone more intimate than any of his previous works, Jon Meacham returns us to the moment that transformed Jesus from a historical figure into the proclaimed Son of God, worshiped by billions.

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 059323667X
Genre Religion
Year 2020-02-18
Pages 144
Language English
File format PDF

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jon Meacham reveals how the Founding Fathers viewed faith—and how they ultimately created a nation in which belief in God is a matter of choice. At a time when our country seems divided by extremism, American Gospel draws on the past to offer a new perspective. Meacham re-creates the fascinating history of a nation grappling with religion and politics–from John Winthrop’s “city on a hill” sermon to Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence; from the Revolution to the Civil War; from a proposed nineteenth-century Christian Amendment to the Constitution to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s call for civil rights; from George Washington to Ronald Reagan. Debates about religion and politics are often more divisive than illuminating. Secularists point to a “wall of separation between church and state,” while many conservatives act as though the Founding Fathers were apostles in knee britches. As Meacham shows in this brisk narrative, neither extreme has it right. At the heart of the American experiment lies the God of what Benjamin Franklin called “public religion,” a God who invests all human beings with inalienable rights while protecting private religion from government interference. It is a great American balancing act, and it has served us well. Meacham has written and spoken extensively about religion and politics, and he brings historical authority and a sense of hope to the issue. American Gospel makes it compellingly clear that the nation’s best chance of summoning what Lincoln called “the better angels of our nature” lies in recovering the spirit and sense of the Founding. In looking back, we may find the light to lead us forward. Praise for American Gospel “In his American Gospel, Jon Meacham provides a refreshingly clear, balanced, and wise historical portrait of religion and American politics at exactly the moment when such fairness and understanding are much needed. Anyone who doubts the relevance of history to our own time has only to read this exceptional book.”—David McCullough, author of 1776 “Jon Meacham has given us an insightful and eloquent account of the spiritual foundation of the early days of the American republic. It is especially instructive reading at a time when the nation is at once engaged in and deeply divided on the question of religion and its place in public life.”—Tom Brokaw, author of The Greatest Generation

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 1588365778
Genre History
Year 2007-03-20
Pages 448
Language English
File format PDF

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Pulitzer Prize–winning author Jon Meacham helps us understand the present moment in American politics and life by looking back at critical times in our history when hope overcame division and fear. ONE OF OPRAH’S “BOOKS THAT HELP ME THROUGH” • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR • The Christian Science Monitor • Southern Living Our current climate of partisan fury is not new, and in The Soul of America Meacham shows us how what Abraham Lincoln called the “better angels of our nature” have repeatedly won the day. Painting surprising portraits of Lincoln and other presidents, including Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, and Lyndon B. Johnson, and illuminating the courage of such influential citizen activists as Martin Luther King, Jr., early suffragettes Alice Paul and Carrie Chapman Catt, civil rights pioneers Rosa Parks and John Lewis, First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, and Army-McCarthy hearings lawyer Joseph N. Welch, Meacham brings vividly to life turning points in American history. He writes about the Civil War, Reconstruction, and the birth of the Lost Cause; the backlash against immigrants in the First World War and the resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s; the fight for women’s rights; the demagoguery of Huey Long and Father Coughlin and the isolationist work of America First in the years before World War II; the anti-Communist witch-hunts led by Senator Joseph McCarthy; and Lyndon Johnson’s crusade against Jim Crow. Each of these dramatic hours in our national life have been shaped by the contest to lead the country to look forward rather than back, to assert hope over fear—a struggle that continues even now. While the American story has not always—or even often—been heroic, we have been sustained by a belief in progress even in the gloomiest of times. In this inspiring book, Meacham reassures us, “The good news is that we have come through such darkness before”—as, time and again, Lincoln’s better angels have found a way to prevail. Praise for The Soul of America “Brilliant, fascinating, timely . . . With compelling narratives of past eras of strife and disenchantment, Meacham offers wisdom for our own time.”—Walter Isaacson “Gripping and inspiring, The Soul of America is Jon Meacham’s declaration of his faith in America.”—Newsday “Meacham gives readers a long-term perspective on American history and a reason to believe the soul of America is ultimately one of kindness and caring, not rancor and paranoia.”—USA Today

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 039958983X
Genre History
Year 2018-05-08
Pages 416
Language English
File format PDF

Since ancient times, music has demonstrated the incomparable ability to touch and resonate with the human spirit as a tool for communication, emotional expression, and as a medium of cultural identity. During World War II, Nazi leadership recognized the power of music and chose to harness it with malevolence, using its power to push their own agenda and systematically stripping it away from the Jewish people and other populations they sought to disempower. But music also emerged as a counterpoint to this hate, withstanding Nazi attempts to exploit or silence it. Artistic expression triumphed under oppressive regimes elsewhere as well, including the horrific siege of Leningrad and in Japanese internment camps in the Pacific. The oppressed stubbornly clung to music, wherever and however they could, to preserve their culture, to uplift the human spirit and to triumph over oppression, even amid incredible tragedy and suffering. This volume draws together the musical connections and individual stories from this tragic time through scholarly literature, diaries, letters, memoirs, compositions, and art pieces. Collectively, they bear witness to the power of music and offer a reminder to humanity of the imperative each faces to not only remember, but to prevent another such cataclysm.

Author Kellie D. Brown
Isbn 1476639949
Genre Social Science
Year 2020-06-05
Pages 318
Language English
File format PDF

One of the few publicly known communists in the South, Junius Scales organized textile workers, fought segregation, and was the only American to be imprisoned under the membership clause of the Smith Act during the McCarthy years. This compact collective memoir, built on three interconnected oral histories and including a historical essay by Gail O'Brien, covers Scales's organizing activities and work against racism in the South, his progressive disillusionment with Party bureaucracy and dogmatic rigidity, his persecution and imprisonment, as well as his family's radicalism and response to FBI hounding and blacklisting. Through the distinct perspectives of Junius, his wife Gladys, and his daughter Barbara, this book deepens and personalizes the story of American radicalism. Conversational, intimate, and exceptionally accessible, A Red Family offers a unique look at the American communist experience from the inside out.

Author Mickey Friedman
Isbn 0252091310
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2010-10-01
Pages 216
Language English
File format PDF

You were the master of the machine...you were an airman.' Flying Officer Bob Crawford Len Waters was a Kamilaroi man. Born on an Aboriginal reserve, he left school at thirteen and by twenty was piloting a RAAF Kittyhawk fighter with 78 Squadron in the lethal skies over the Pacific in World War II. It was serious and dangerous work and his achievement was extraordinary. These would be the best years of his life. Respected by his peers, he was living his dream. The war over, it should have been easy. He believed he could 'live on both sides of the fence' and be part of Australia's emerging commercial airline industry. He had, after all, broken through the 'black ceiling' once before. Above all, he just wanted to fly. Instead, he became a missing man in Australia's wartime flying history. Peter Rees rights that wrong in this powerful, compelling and at times tragic examination of Len Water's life. He also tells us something of ourselves that we need to hear.

Author Peter Rees
Isbn 1760636428
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2018-06-27
Pages 360
Language English
File format PDF

Winner of the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work/Biography -- in paperback for the first time. In turbulent times Americans look to the Civil Rights Movement as the apotheosis of political expression. As we confront questions of social inequality there's no better time to revisit the lessons of the '60s and no better leader to learn from than Congressman John Lewis. In Across That Bridge, Congressman Lewis draws from his experience as a leader of the Civil Rights Movement to offer timeless guidance to anyone seeking to live virtuously and transform the world. His wisdom, poignant recollections, and powerful ideas will inspire a new generation to usher in a freer, more peaceful society. The Civil Rights Movement gave rise to the protest culture we know today, and the experiences of leaders like Congressman Lewis have never been more relevant. Now featuring an updated introduction from the author addressing the current administration, Across that Bridge offers a strong and moral voice to guide our nation through an era of great uncertainty. "The most important lesson I have learned in the fifty years I have spent working toward the building of a better world is that the true work of social transformation starts within. It begins inside your own heart and mind, because the battleground of human transformation is really, more than any other thing, the struggle within the human consciousness to believe and accept what is true. Thus to truly revolutionize our society, we must first revolutionize ourselves. We must be the change we seek if we are to effectively demand transformation from others." ---John Lewis in Across That Bridge

Author John Lewis
Isbn 1401303749
Genre Political Science
Year 2012-05-15
Pages 208
Language English
File format PDF

NOW A NATIONAL BESTSELLER “This man is a gift from God to the world. This book is a gift from Al Sharpton to us. Let’s appreciate them both.”—Michael Eric Dyson Beginning with a foreword by Michael Eric Dyson and closing with Rev. Al Sharpton’s moving eulogy for George Floyd, Rise Up is a rousing call to action for our nation, drawing on lessons learned from Reverend Al Sharpton’s unique experience as a politician, television and radio host, and civil rights leader. Rise Up offers timeless lessons for anyone who’s stood at the crossroads of their personal or political life, weighing their choices of how to proceed. When the young Alfred Charles Sharpton told his mother he wanted to be a preacher, little did he know that his journey would also lead him to prominence as a politician, founder of the National Action Network, civil rights activist, and television and radio talk show host. His enduring ability and willingness to take on the political power structure makes him the preeminent voice for the modern era, a time unprecedented in its challenges. In Rise Up, Reverend Sharpton revisits the highlights of the Obama administration, the 2016 election and Trump’s subsequent hold on the GOP, and draws on his decades-long experience with other key players in politics and activism, including Shirley Chisholm, Hillary Clinton, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and more. The time has come to take a hard look at our collective failures and shortcomings and reclaim our core values in order to build a clear and just path forward for America. Our nation today stands at a crossroads—and change can’t wait. “Full of history, honesty, and valuable suggestions, Rise Up should be a staple in every home, school and library as an essential primer on civil and political rights in America.”—Martin Luther King, III “If you want to learn how to use your voice to change a nation, you should study closely this man—and this book.” —Van Jones “My Bed-Stuy (do or die) brother has been at the forefront of our battles again and again. From way back in da way back to this present revolution the world is in now, Rev. has been about Black Lives Matter from the jump, also at a time when it was not the most popular or hip thing to be about. I look forward, standing next to him, to see, to witness this new energy, this new day that is about to be in these United States of America.”—Spike Lee

Author Al Sharpton
Isbn 1488077460
Genre Political Science
Year 2020-09-29
Pages 283
Language English
File format PDF

Summary of Destiny and Power: by Jon Meacham | Includes Analysis Preview: Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush by Jon Meacham is a biography of George H.W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States, who served from 1988 to 1992. The author argues that as president and as a politician, Bush used prudence and compromise to an extent that would seem out of place in today’s era of highly partisan US politics. George H.W. Bush had a varied career before winning the presidency: he was a Navy pilot, oilman, congressman, ambassador to the UN, envoy to China, head of the Republican Party, and later director of the CIA. In the executive branch, he first served as vice president of the United States under Ronald Reagan for eight years before beginning his own presidency… PLEASE NOTE: This is a summary and analysis of the book and NOT the original book. Inside this Instaread Summary & Analysis of Destiny and Power: • Summary of book • Introduction to the Important People in the book • Analysis of the Themes and Author’s Style

Author Instaread
Isbn 1944195750
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2016-02-01
Pages 35
Language English
File format PDF

NPR’s Best Books of 2020 BookPage’s Best Books of 2020 Real Simple’s Best Books of 2020 Boston.com readers voted one of Best Books of 2020 “Anyone striving to understand and improve this country should read her story.” —Gloria Steinem, author of My Life on the Road The Emmy Award–winning journalist and anchor of NPR’s Latino USA tells the story of immigration in America through her family’s experiences and decades of reporting, painting an unflinching portrait of a country in crisis in this memoir that is “quite simply beautiful, written in Maria Hinojosa’s honest, passionate voice” (BookPage). Maria Hinojosa is an award-winning journalist who, for nearly thirty years, has reported on stories and communities in America that often go ignored by the mainstream media—from tales of hope in the South Bronx to the unseen victims of the War on Terror and the first detention camps in the US. Bestselling author Julia Álvarez has called her “one of the most important, respected, and beloved cultural leaders in the Latinx community.” In Once I Was You, Maria shares her intimate experience growing up Mexican American on the South Side of Chicago. She offers a personal and illuminating account of how the rhetoric around immigration has not only long informed American attitudes toward outsiders, but also sanctioned willful negligence and profiteering at the expense of our country’s most vulnerable populations—charging us with the broken system we have today. An urgent call to fellow Americans to open their eyes to the immigration crisis and understand that it affects us all, this honest and heartrending memoir paints a vivid portrait of how we got here and what it means to be a survivor, a feminist, a citizen, and a journalist who owns her voice while striving for the truth. Also available in Spanish as Una vez fui tú.

Author Maria Hinojosa
Isbn 1982128674
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2020-09-15
Pages 352
Language English
File format PDF

A primary architect of the Social Gospel, a movement that responded to the changing social and industrial conditions in the U.S. during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, presents his prophetic interpretation of Jesus and the kingdom, understanding of troubling conditions that call the church to faithful witness, and to work toward meaningful political and economic reforms.

Author Walter Rauschenbusch
Isbn 1592444180
Genre Religion
Year 2003-11-12
Pages 446
Language English
File format PDF

In this special illustrated edition of the #1 New York Times bestselling Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power by Pulitzer Prize–winning author Jon Meacham, young readers will learn about the life and political philosophy of one of our Founding Fathers. Thomas Jefferson was the third president of the United States. He was one of the authors of the Declaration of Independence. But he was also a lawyer and an ambassador, an inventor and a scientist. He had a wide range of interests and hobbies, but his consuming interest was the survival and success of the United States. This book contains a note from Meacham and over 100 archival illustrations, as well as sections throughout the text about subjects such as the Boston Tea Party, the Library of Congress, and Napoléon Bonaparte. Additional materials include a time line; a family tree; a Who’s Who in Jefferson’s world; sections on Jefferson’s original writings and correspondence, “inventions,” interests, places in Jefferson’s world, finding Jefferson in the United States today, additional reading, organizations, and websites; notes; a bibliography; and an index. This adaptation, ideal for those interested in American presidents, biographies, and the founding of the American republic, is an excellent example of informational writing and reflects Meacham’s extensive research using primary source material.

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 0385387512
Genre Juvenile Nonfiction
Year 2014-09-09
Pages 336
Language English
File format PDF

“Brilliantly illustrates the immense and disarming power of changing course and driving not toward division, but toward civility and mutual respect.” --Ms. magazine As a progressive commentator on Fox News and now CNN, Sally Kohn has made a career out of bridging intractable political differences. In this age of dangerous partisan resentment and rising bigotry, she decided to investigate hate itself--to better consider how we can stop it. With her trademark humor and humanity, Kohn introduces us to leading researchers and scientists who are exploring the evolutionary and cultural roots of hate. She travels to Rwanda, to the Middle East, and across the United States, talking with former terrorists and reformed white supremacists, and even sitting down with some of her own Twitter trolls. What she discovers is surprising: All of us harbor hate but the powerful acknowledgment that we are all in this together can lead us out of the wilderness. The opposite of hate is connection.

Author Sally Kohn
Isbn 161620835X
Genre Political Science
Year 2018-04-10
Pages 256
Language English
File format PDF

A literary anthology of important and artful interpretations of the civil rights movement and the fight against white supremacy, past and present—including pieces by Maya Angelou, James Baldwin, Ralph Ellison, Alice Walker, Richard Wright, and John Lewis “Jon Meacham . . . has done about the best job of anthologizing the movement that I’ve ever seen.”—Tom Wicker, Mother Jones Editor and Pulitzer Prize–winning author Jon Meacham has chosen pieces by journalists, novelists, historians, and artists, bringing together a wide range of perspectives and experiences. The result is an unprecedented and powerful portrait of the movement’s spirit and struggle, told through voices that resonate with passion and strength. Maya Angelou takes us on a poignant journey back to her childhood in the Arkansas of the 1930s. On the front page of The New York Times, James Reston marks the movement’s apex as he describes what it was like to watch Martin Luther King, Jr., deliver his heralded “I Have a Dream” speech in real time. Alice Walker takes up the movement’s progress a decade later in her article “Choosing to Stay at Home: Ten Years After the March on Washington.” And John Lewis chronicles the unimaginable courage of the ordinary African Americans who challenged the prevailing order, paid for it in blood and tears, and justly triumphed. Voices in Our Blood is a compelling look at the movement as it actually happened, from the days leading up to World War II to the anxieties and ambiguities of this new century. The story of race in America is a never-ending one, and Voices in Our Blood tells us how we got this far—and how far we still have to go to reach the Promised Land. This powerful anthology contains works from: Maya Angelou • Russell Baker • James Baldwin • Taylor Branch • Hodding Carter • Ellis Cose • Stanley Crouch • Ralph Ellison • William Faulkner • Marshall Frady • Henry Louis Gates, Jr. • Peter Goldman • David Halberstam • Alex Haley • Elizabeth Hardwick • Charlayne Hunter-Gault • Murray Kempton • John Lewis • Louis E. Lomax • Benjamin E. Mays • Willie Morris • Flannery O’Connor • Walker Percy • Howell Raines • James Reston • Carl T. Rowan • John Steinbeck • William Styron • Calvin Trillin • Alice Walker • Robert Penn Warren • Pat Watters • Bernard Weinraub • Eudora Welty • Rebecca West • E. B. White • Gary Wills • Tom Wolfe • Richard Wright

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 0375506829
Genre History
Year 2001-02-15
Pages 576
Language English
File format PDF

The definitive biography of a larger-than-life president who defied norms, divided a nation, and changed Washington forever Andrew Jackson, his intimate circle of friends, and his tumultuous times are at the heart of this remarkable book about the man who rose from nothing to create the modern presidency. Beloved and hated, venerated and reviled, Andrew Jackson was an orphan who fought his way to the pinnacle of power, bending the nation to his will in the cause of democracy. Jackson’s election in 1828 ushered in a new and lasting era in which the people, not distant elites, were the guiding force in American politics. Democracy made its stand in the Jackson years, and he gave voice to the hopes and the fears of a restless, changing nation facing challenging times at home and threats abroad. To tell the saga of Jackson’s presidency, acclaimed author Jon Meacham goes inside the Jackson White House. Drawing on newly discovered family letters and papers, he details the human drama–the family, the women, and the inner circle of advisers– that shaped Jackson’s private world through years of storm and victory. One of our most significant yet dimly recalled presidents, Jackson was a battle-hardened warrior, the founder of the Democratic Party, and the architect of the presidency as we know it. His story is one of violence, sex, courage, and tragedy. With his powerful persona, his evident bravery, and his mystical connection to the people, Jackson moved the White House from the periphery of government to the center of national action, articulating a vision of change that challenged entrenched interests to heed the popular will– or face his formidable wrath. The greatest of the presidents who have followed Jackson in the White House–from Lincoln to Theodore Roosevelt to FDR to Truman–have found inspiration in his example, and virtue in his vision. Jackson was the most contradictory of men. The architect of the removal of Indians from their native lands, he was warmly sentimental and risked everything to give more power to ordinary citizens. He was, in short, a lot like his country: alternately kind and vicious, brilliant and blind; and a man who fought a lifelong war to keep the republic safe–no matter what it took.

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 158836822X
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2008-11-11
Pages 512
Language English
File format PDF

"An exemplary biography—exhaustively researched, fair-minded and easy to read. It can nestle on the same shelf as David McCullough’s Truman, a high compliment indeed." —The Wall Street Journal The definitive biography of Herbert Hoover, one of the most remarkable Americans of the twentieth century—a wholly original account that will forever change the way Americans understand the man, his presidency, his battle against the Great Depression, and their own history. An impoverished orphan who built a fortune. A great humanitarian. A president elected in a landslide and then resoundingly defeated four years later. Arguably the father of both New Deal liberalism and modern conservatism, Herbert Hoover lived one of the most extraordinary American lives of the twentieth century. Yet however astonishing, his accomplishments are often eclipsed by the perception that Hoover was inept and heartless in the face of the Great Depression. Now, Kenneth Whyte vividly recreates Hoover’s rich and dramatic life in all its complex glory. He follows Hoover through his Iowa boyhood, his cutthroat business career, his brilliant rescue of millions of lives during World War I and the 1927 Mississippi floods, his misconstrued presidency, his defeat at the hands of a ruthless Franklin Roosevelt, his devastating years in the political wilderness, his return to grace as Truman's emissary to help European refugees after World War II, and his final vindication in the days of Kennedy's "New Frontier." Ultimately, Whyte brings to light Hoover’s complexities and contradictions—his modesty and ambition, his ruthlessness and extreme generosity—as well as his profound political legacy. Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times is the epic, poignant story of the deprived boy who, through force of will, made himself the most accomplished figure in the land, and who experienced a range of achievements and failures unmatched by any American of his, or perhaps any, era. Here, for the first time, is the definitive biography that fully captures the colossal scale of Hoover’s momentous life and volatile times.

Author Kenneth Whyte
Isbn 152473246X
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2017-10-10
Pages 752
Language English
File format PDF

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A celebration of American history through the music that helped to shape a nation, by Pulitzer Prize winner Jon Meacham and music superstar Tim McGraw “Jon Meacham and Tim McGraw form an irresistible duo—connecting us to music as an unsung force in our nation's history.”—Doris Kearns Goodwin Through all the years of strife and triumph, America has been shaped not just by our elected leaders and our formal politics but also by our music—by the lyrics, performers, and instrumentals that have helped to carry us through the dark days and to celebrate the bright ones. From “The Star-Spangled Banner” to “Born in the U.S.A.,” Jon Meacham and Tim McGraw take readers on a moving and insightful journey through eras in American history and the songs and performers that inspired us. Meacham chronicles our history, exploring the stories behind the songs, and Tim McGraw reflects on them as an artist and performer. Their perspectives combine to create a unique view of the role music has played in uniting and shaping a nation. Beginning with the battle hymns of the revolution, and taking us through songs from the defining events of the Civil War, the fight for women’s suffrage, the two world wars, the Great Depression, the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, and into the twenty-first century, Meacham and McGraw explore the songs that defined generations, and the cultural and political climates that produced them. Readers will discover the power of music in the lives of figures such as Harriet Tubman, Franklin Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Martin Luther King, Jr., and will learn more about some of our most beloved musicians and performers, including Marian Anderson, Elvis Presley, Sam Cooke, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, Duke Ellington, Carole King, Bruce Springsteen, and more. Songs of America explores both famous songs and lesser-known ones, expanding our understanding of the scope of American music and lending deeper meaning to the historical context of such songs as “My Country, ’Tis of Thee,” “God Bless America,” “Over There,” “We Shall Overcome,” and “Blowin’ in the Wind.” As Quincy Jones says, Meacham and McGraw have “convened a concert in Songs of America,” one that reminds us of who we are, where we’ve been, and what we, at our best, can be.

Author Jon Meacham,Tim McGraw
Isbn 0593132963
Genre History
Year 2019-06-11
Pages 320
Language English
File format PDF

An award-winning presidential historian offers an authoritative account of American presidents' attacks on our freedom of the press. “The FAKE NEWS media,” Donald Trump has tweeted, “is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!” Has our free press ever faced as great a threat? Perhaps not—but the tension between presidents and journalists is as old as the republic itself. Every president has been convinced of his own honesty and transparency; every reporter who has covered the White House beat has believed with equal fervency that his or her journalistic rigor protects the country from danger. Our first president, George Washington, was also the first to grouse about his treatment in the newspapers, although he kept his complaints private. Subsequent chiefs like John Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, and Barack Obama were not so reticent, going so far as to wield executive power to overturn press freedoms, and even to prosecute journalists. Theodore Roosevelt was the first president to actively manage the stable of reporters who followed him, doling out information, steering coverage, and squashing stories that interfered with his agenda. It was a strategy that galvanized TR’s public support, but the lesson was lost on Woodrow Wilson, who never accepted reporters into his inner circle. Franklin Roosevelt transformed media relations forever, holding more than a thousand presidential press conferences and harnessing the new power of radio, at times bypassing the press altogether. John F. Kennedy excelled on television and charmed reporters to hide his personal life, while Richard Nixon was the first to cast the press as a public enemy. From the days of newsprint and pamphlets to the rise of Facebook and Twitter, each president has harnessed the media, whether intentional or not, to imprint his own character on the office. In this remarkable new history, acclaimed scholar Harold Holzer examines the dual rise of the American presidency and the media that shaped it. From Washington to Trump, he chronicles the disputes and distrust between these core institutions that define the United States of America, revealing that the essence of their confrontation is built into the fabric of the nation.

Author Harold Holzer
Isbn 1524745278
Genre Political Science
Year 2020-08-25
Pages 576
Language English
File format PDF

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review • The Washington Post • Entertainment Weekly • The Seattle Times • St. Louis Post-Dispatch • Bloomberg Businessweek In this magnificent biography, the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of American Lion and Franklin and Winston brings vividly to life an extraordinary man and his remarkable times. Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power gives us Jefferson the politician and president, a great and complex human being forever engaged in the wars of his era. Philosophers think; politicians maneuver. Jefferson’s genius was that he was both and could do both, often simultaneously. Such is the art of power. Thomas Jefferson hated confrontation, and yet his understanding of power and of human nature enabled him to move men and to marshal ideas, to learn from his mistakes, and to prevail. Passionate about many things—women, his family, books, science, architecture, gardens, friends, Monticello, and Paris—Jefferson loved America most, and he strove over and over again, despite fierce opposition, to realize his vision: the creation, survival, and success of popular government in America. Jon Meacham lets us see Jefferson’s world as Jefferson himself saw it, and to appreciate how Jefferson found the means to endure and win in the face of rife partisan division, economic uncertainty, and external threat. Drawing on archives in the United States, England, and France, as well as unpublished Jefferson presidential papers, Meacham presents Jefferson as the most successful political leader of the early republic, and perhaps in all of American history. The father of the ideal of individual liberty, of the Louisiana Purchase, of the Lewis and Clark expedition, and of the settling of the West, Jefferson recognized that the genius of humanity—and the genius of the new nation—lay in the possibility of progress, of discovering the undiscovered and seeking the unknown. From the writing of the Declaration of Independence to elegant dinners in Paris and in the President’s House; from political maneuverings in the boardinghouses and legislative halls of Philadelphia and New York to the infant capital on the Potomac; from his complicated life at Monticello, his breathtaking house and plantation in Virginia, to the creation of the University of Virginia, Jefferson was central to the age. Here too is the personal Jefferson, a man of appetite, sensuality, and passion. The Jefferson story resonates today not least because he led his nation through ferocious partisanship and cultural warfare amid economic change and external threats, and also because he embodies an eternal drama, the struggle of the leadership of a nation to achieve greatness in a difficult and confounding world. Praise for Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power “This is probably the best single-volume biography of Jefferson ever written.”—Gordon S. Wood “A big, grand, absorbing exploration of not just Jefferson and his role in history but also Jefferson the man, humanized as never before.”—Entertainment Weekly “[Meacham] captures who Jefferson was, not just as a statesman but as a man. . . . By the end of the book . . . the reader is likely to feel as if he is losing a dear friend. . . . [An] absorbing tale.”—The Christian Science Monitor “This terrific book allows us to see the political genius of Thomas Jefferson better than we have ever seen it before. In these endlessly fascinating pages, Jefferson emerges with such vitality that it seems as if he might still be alive today.”—Doris Kearns Goodwin

Author Jon Meacham
Isbn 0679645365
Genre Biography & Autobiography
Year 2012-11-13
Pages 800
Language English
File format PDF