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Greatness: Reagan, Churchill, and the Making of Extraordinary Leaders Paperback – October 24, 2006
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Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
On the surface, the juxtaposition of Reagan and Churchill does not seem apt, yet the narrator undertakes substantial effort to illustrate just how much they had in common. When we think of Churchill, we immediately think of his monstrous wit and intellect, but, in reality, we should also think the same about the 40th President of the United States. Certainly, he was not a scholar, but Reagan wrote thousands and thousands of pages for radio addresses and columns which kept his name alive during the wilderness years of the late and middle seventies. Reagan's wit and humor was every bit the equal to Churchill's. Both men were mavericks who never allowed their political parties to predetermine their views or actions. These were conservatives occasionally distrusted by their fellow conservatives, but, regardless, they managed to outshine all of their peers.
Greatness, albeit it short, manages to convey the spirit of two titans who will be referenced well into the next millennium. It reads very quickly, but what will be best remembered are the quotations detailed within. The words of Reagan and the words of Churchill flower over every page, and, by letting his subjects speak, Hayward has fulfilled his mission.Read more ›
Fascinating, even eerie parallels between Churchill and Reagan: well, everyone will have his own favorites. Here are mine.
First, public speaking. They both wrote their own speeches and slaved over them. Churchill wrote on 4" x 8" paper, Reagan on 4" x 6" cards. They both practiced their speeches almost to the point of memorization, with the same result: they sounded spontaneous and convincing to their audiences. They both made speeches which changed men's minds. Carter, Johnson, and Nixon were incapable of such a thing.
Second, their marriages. Churchill's first marriage, Reagan's second -- both were Total Love Relationships, with absolute loyalty on both sides, the kind of love Walt Disney teaches us to dream about.
There are many other fascinating parallels (and non-parallels) between these two great leaders, but I'll leave them for you to discover as you read this VERY stimulating book!
Reagan was born in modest circumstances and his relationship with his adored father was also painful due to his father's drunkeness. This relationship also ended abruptly by a death that was probably brought on by alcoholism.
Both men were devoted to their mothers and both men didn't bloom until they got away from home. Both men botched their early romances but ended up with devoted wives who they were intensely attached too. Both men seemed to be mystified and somewhat distant by their offspring. Both men were seriously underestimated by enemies and their own party colleagues. Both men despite living such hugely public lives were ciphers in private.
This book isn't trying to be an exhaustive treatise. It's a quick compare/contrast and is both amusing and eye opening.
This latter point, their educations, may have come the closest to telling us how great leaders are created. Both men, it would seem, were rather poor students in their early years, but both men spent most of the remainder of their lifetimes reading and writing and, in effect, educating themselves without any presumed experts to tell them that this or that theory or manner of thinking was incorrect. In their solitude, much like Abraham Lincoln, they were left to decide for themselves what was right and what was wrong. As a consequence, neither Reagan nor Churchill ended up conforming to the conventional wisdom of his time, with the result that neither one was fully understood nor appreciated during his political lifetime.
This is an excellent book filled with little known, or at least little remembered, facts, anecdotes, quotes, and excerpts concerning two great statesmen. The comparisons are many, with surprising similarities that do both men great honor. Bottom line - This is a book well worth reading. I highly recommend it, but don't expect what the title offers but the book fails to deliver.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The author did not make his point.
He talked about how similar Churchill and Reagan was and then points out how different they were. Read more
This is a great introduction to Reagan and Churchill with brief biographical insights into both leaders and the common traits between them.Published 8 months ago by Parker Higgins
This is a wonderful comparison of Ronald Reagan and Winston Churchill. Describes little known facts about these leaders and statesmen. Excellent book.Published on May 10, 2013 by Buttlerfly2043
If you are interested in these two great historical leaders and an analysis of what they accomplished, this is the book for you. Read morePublished on April 20, 2013 by M. Hancock
This book says it all; leadership, statesmanship, vision, humor, humility and, yes, greatness. Not just a clichie, this volume presents a coghent summary of how two outstanding men... Read morePublished on May 9, 2011 by Gandalf
I wouldn't have thought these two fellows had so much in common
until I read this book.....I would encourage everyone to read it.
This is an unusual book........ Read more
If I could have met two Historical figures they would have been Prime Minister Churchill & President Reagan. Read morePublished on October 21, 2008 by Reginald H. Arthur