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Lyndon Johnson & the American Dream

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Lyndon Johnson & the American Dream.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    Doris Kearns(Author)

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Doris Kearns Goodwin's classic life of Lyndon Johnson, who presided over the Great Society, the Vietnam War, and other defining moments the tumultuous 1960s, is a monument in political biography. From the moment the author, then a young woman from Harvard, first encountered President Johnson at a White House dance in the spring of 1967, she became fascinated by the man—his character, his enormous energy and drive, and his manner of wielding these gifts in an endless pursuit of power. As a member of his White House staff, she soon became his personal confidante, and in the years before his death he revealed himself to her as he did to no other.

Widely praised and enormously popular, Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream is a work of biography like few others. With uncanny insight and arichly engrossing style, the author renders LBJ in all his vibrant, conflicted humanity.

"The most penetrating, fascinating political biography I have ever read . . . No other President has had a biographer who had such access to his private thoughts."—The New York Times"Magnificent, brilliant, illuminating . . . A profound analysis of both the private and the public man."—Miami Herald"Kearns has made Lyndon Johnson so whole, so understandable that the impact of the book is difficult to describe. It might have been called 'The Tragedy of Lyndon Johnson,' for he comes to seem nothing so much as a figure out of Greek tragedy."—Houston Chronicle"Johnson's every word and deed is measured in an attempt to understand one of the most powerful yet tragic of American Presidents."—Chicago Tribune"A fine and shrewd book . . . Extraordinary . . . Poignant . . . The best [biography of LBJ] we have to date."—Boston Globe"An extraordinary portrait of a generous, devious, complex, and profoundly manipulative man . . . [Kearns Goodwin] became the custodian not only of LBJ's political lore but of his memories, hopes, and nightmares . . . We have it all laid out for us in this wrenchingly intimate analysis of a man who virtues, like his faults, were on a giant scale."—Cosmopolitan"Absorbing and sympathetic, warts and all."—The Washington Post"A grand and fascinating portrait of a most complicated, haunted, and here appealing man."—The Village Voice"Vivid . . . No other book is likely to offer a sharper, more intimate portrait of Lyndon Johnson in his full psychic undress."—Newsweek"Powerful, first-rate, gratifying . . . [The author] has proven herself worthy of Lyndon Johnson's trust; for by sharing his fears and dreams with us, she has helped us to understand no just one man, but an era, and ultimately ourselves."—Newsday -- Review --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. Doris Kearns Goodwin, the celebrated historian who is also the author of The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys and other bestsellers, has written a new foreword for this edition of Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream. She lives in Concord, Massachusetts, with her husband and their three sons. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

3.5 (10523)
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Book details

  • PDF | Unknown pages
  • Doris Kearns(Author)
  • Signet; First Edition edition (August 2, 1977)
  • English
  • 3
  • History

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Review Text

  • By Davunt on January 17, 2017

    This book is certainly no "Team of Rivals," Goodwin's riveting and weighty tome about Abraham Lincoln. It doesn't capture the imagination the way that book did; the language can be overly academic and a bit opaque at times. That being said, this is well researched by an author with direct personal knowledge of the subject. Doris Kearns Goodwin does not need praises from me to be recognized as an excellent historian and biographer who can tell a compelling story and she delivers here. As one who lived through the Johnson years myself I was intrigued to find new depths of understanding into his character and motivations. Also of interest was insight into the actions going on outside of the public eye, most of which were unknown to me. I have a better understanding of Lyndon Johnson after reading this book and that's what it's all about, isn't it?

  • By Ronald L. Koch on October 13, 2017

    This incredible biography of Lyndon Johnson written by one of the best historical writers in America today. Doris Kearns Goodwin had a personal relationship with President Johnson. Goodwin frequently met with Johnson when he was President and almost until the day he died. Johnson was a very complex southerner but made every effort to pass civil rights legislation that President Kennedy wanted passed before he was killed in 1963. His problem after the passage of Civil Rights legislation was, of course, Viet Nam. Goodwin delves into the personality of the man with all his attributes and weaknesses. I believe Johnson would have been considered a great president if he hadn't had all the problems he did with Viet Nam. Anyone who likes American history and the 1960's in America will find this a very in depth analysis of a larger than life President.

  • By Kilian85710 on August 4, 2017

    I don't go out of my way reading about politics,, but in short order I fond myself reading three books about the inner workings of politics. This one was to fill the 'about an American president' box on my Book Bingo card.I had vague memories of photos of Johnson picking up his beagle by the ears, showing the world his scar from his gallbladder surgery, and standing beside a stricken Jackie Kennedy in her blood-stained dress as he took the oath of office. Then we were embroiled in the Vietnam war, and that's about all I remember about him.This book fills in the details I didn't know and left me with the impression of a great man. He would have been a great president, too, if he had allowed himself to be entangled in the war. All his skill was in domestic policy, and he is responsible for Medicare, Medicaid, educational programs, and supporting his wife in her efforts to beautify America. He was a masterful leader in the senate, and if he hadn't been promoted beyond his competency, he would have had a wonderful end to his career.Instead, he allowed himself to be pulled out of the senate into the shadow of Jack Kennedy, a man he could never have sympathy for. All his skills of getting people to do what he wanted, were wasted in the office of vice-president. Trying to live up to the memory of Kennedy place an unbearable burden on him.Goodwin's book tells the whole story from his birth in a small town in Texas, to his death as a failed president. with sympathy and understanding.

  • By Dr.J.Chuck on October 14, 2017

    Good section on Vietnam explains LBJ's big bad decision.His foreign relations knowledge was poor, nothing like his mastery of domestic life.So he relied on experts like the generals and McNamara spouting mistaken Cold War propaganda when many looked backwards at WWII and imagined global monsters like Nazis and Commies.These experts failed us - see the book "Dereliction of Duty" by H.R.McMasterEventually McNamara advised him the bombing wouldn't win, but too late by then, as LBJ would quit.He also listened to the silent majority who still blithely thought we could win at least we should win. The younger generation disagreed and forced the issue. Television coverage helped convince enough voters and LBJ quit, to lead in the evil Mr. Nixon.

  • By DaveF on November 29, 2015

    This biography rates 3.5 stars for me. I am a fan of author Doris Kearns Goodwin. She is an excellent writer, story teller, and historian. She had unprecedented access to Lyndon Johnson during his last half-dozen years and it shows in the book. I came away with a very good understanding of our 36th president, particularly in regard to his decisions on Vietnam. I rate the historical nature of the book 5 stars. I rate the book down on its general readability. This was the author's first book, written 40 years ago. Her writing since then has improved immeasurably. This book read too much like a thesis. And the somewhat amateur psychology regarding LBJ was distracting and annoying. But, in the end, I'm glad I read it and I learned a great deal.

  • By Karyn Packard on December 31, 2016

    I have incredible respect for Doris Kearns Goodwin as an author and a historian. She had unbelievable access to Lyndon Johnson throughout his life. Anyone who enjoys political biographies will be more than satisfied with this book at so many levels. It is a must read.

  • By Alabama reader on January 23, 2016

    I have read a number of books about LBJ so I hesitated to read this one. I am glad I did - I thought Doris Kearns Goodwin gave some insight that I had not remembered in other books. LBJ was a complicated man - generous to a fault and cruel at the same time with a tremendous ego that continually needed to be stroked. By the time I finished this book, I had a better understanding of the man.

  • By Doug on August 17, 2014

    I would have given this 5 stars but Doris Kearns Goodwin just gets into too much analysis from a psychological perspective. Keep in mind, however, that she was probably right about theories on LBJ. Her political views also come into play just a little too much.On the positive side, this was definitely worth reading. While she may have been biased with her political views, she is very quick to offer alternative points of view. Most importantly, her access to LBJ seems unprecedented. This book was definitely worth the time and money - I enjoyed it and look forward to doing more research on the President and his era.

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