The list author says: "Franklin Roosevelt led America out of the trauma of the Great Depression and to victory over Hitler in World War II. FDR said, "We must be the Great Arsenal of Democracy." His fireside chats build a bond with Americans. He was reelected by landslides. Because of the New Deal, decades of stable middle class prosperity followed. FDR’s Four Freedoms and the Atlantic Charter declared Roosevelt’s vision of world freedom. He tactfully pulled America from isolationism to WWII superpower and forged post-war policies of self-determination, collective security, free trade and economic stability. FDR hastened the end of colonialism. Presidential historians rate Franklin D. Roosevelt as one of America’s three greatest presidents. FDR created Social Security and the GI Bill (college for millions for the first time). Before FDR took office, the economy had been in Depression for three years. The financial system had collapsed. FDR said, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." The New Deal sought RELIEF, RECOVERY and REFORM. The New Deal created SEC for safe financial markets, FDIC to end bank panics, CCC, Glass-Steagall Act for firewalls in finance, extensive WPA infrastructure projects put people to work, HOLC saved the 50% of all mortgages in default, FHA for modern 30-year mortgages (millions of homes for the middle class for the first time) and loan requirements (to prevent bad loans), unemployment insurance, Fair Labor Standards Act, Fed Reserve Board, rural electrification (for millions), farm supports, and ended a flawed gold standard. In FDR’s first four years, the DOW skyrocketed 353%, GDP grew 63%, personal income after taxes increased 45.5% and manufacturing employment rose 3.4% PER QUARTER. Worker productivity skyrocketed and hiring stagnated. A severe 1937-38 recession was caused when New Deal stimulus spending was sharply cut, reversed by massive WWII spending and ensuing full employment. Time named FDR one of the 20th Century’s three most important people."
"This book is the best introduction to FDR and a great biography. It won the Francis Parkman Prize for excellence in historical writing. FDR pulled America from isolationism to destroy Hitler in WWII. He said, "We must be the Great Arsenal of Democracy." He gave meaning to the war with his Four Freedoms and Atlantic Charter, hastening the end of colonialism."
"Historian H.W. Brands is one of the greatest writers of historical biographies. This FDR biography received strong reviews and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Roosevelt won the presidency four times, including the largest electoral landslide (98.5%) in the 20th Century."
"Yes, a terrific account of FDR as war leader. A supreme addition to the literature. The New Deal had crown jewel achievements and created long term stable high growth but also mistakes, with it being somewhat experimenting. In contrast, FDR's war leadership was simply extraordinary."
"The Economist Magazine called this book "a masterpiece." Written by a conservative, the research is astonishing; the tidbits engrossing. It received great reviews from both the right, like Kissinger and Buckley, and the left. FDR led America through the Great Depression and to victory in WWII. This amazing book is a terrific history of the era. The author concludes that FDR was a great president."
"This book won the Pulitzer Prize. World War II was an era of great change. Franklin Roosevelt skillfully led America to victory in World War II. He made the right strategic moves and made the fewest mistakes of any world leader. Eleanor Roosevelt championed human rights and was a ground-breaking role model for women. This book tells the story of America during the war years."
"This well-researched book won the Pulitzer Prize and Francis Parkman Prize. The writing vividly paints the period. It explains the economics of the era in a way that most people can understand. It is the standard summary of the era. But it downplays the strong New Deal recovery in FDR's first term (check the GDP and DOW numbers for EACH year in 1933-1937). Read a good FDR biography first."
"This book won the Francis Parkman Prize. It profiles the US commanders and FDR during WWII. FDR made the right strategic decisions. He was terrific at picking the right leaders (sometimes out of obscurity). John Keegan called this book “the most comprehensive collective portrait of the American war leadership.”Arthur Hadley called it “brilliant.” David Eisenhower liked it."
"This benchmark FDR biography is excellent at reporting FDR's early years and struggle with polio. Roosevelt said, "There is a mysterious cycle in human events. To some generations much is given. Of other generations much is expected. This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.""
"Written by a terrific biographer, this well-researched biography of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt's relationship may become the benchmark. They had a remarkable marriage, helped each other tremendously, and changed the world. This book reveals the gossipy, private details while not getting sensational."
"This scholarly masterpiece emphasizing global strategic dynamics won the George Louis Beer Prize. It brilliantly explains the causes, major events, and reasons behind events - what and why – of World War Two. This is probably the best WWII book from a big-picture, strategic decision view. This is essential for US foreign policy in WWII."
"This is great entertainment with excellent acting. It tells the true story of the rich and powerful FDR becoming paralyzed with polio, and his discovery of Warm Springs, where he came to champion the concerns of the disabled and common man. Also check out the movie "Sunrise at Campobollo.""
"*Starred Review* An excellent book about how the New Deal and American workers built America's infrastructure during the Great Depression, building the groundwork for decades of booming economic growth. Other countries, such as Japan and China, have copied New Deal-style capitalism to great success: free markets with government investements and sensible regulations."
"This book won the National Book Award and is THE classic book on Hitler's dark rise to power during the depression, his crimes, and the catastrohic world war of world conquest he started. 60 million people died in World War II. This is one of the best-selling books of all-time. Must read!"
"This masterpiece of history won the Francis Parkman Prize by the Society of American Historians and the National Book Critics Circle Award. It tells the engrossing story of Franklin Roosevelt during his rich formative adult years, including his moving struggle with paralysis from polio. Superb! Ward also wrote a fine book about FDR's childhood called "Before the Trumpet.""
"Winston Churchill called Franklin Roosevelt "the greatest man I have ever known." They built a great partnership and won WWII, yet had their disagreements. Churchill became a futile defender of British colonialism, while FDR envisioned a world of post-war freedom."
"This book won the Bancroft Prize and Francis Parkman Prize. The New Deal created SEC for safer financial markets, FDIC to end bank panics, Social Security, unemployment insurance, Fed Reserve Board, rural electricity, FHA (created modern mortgages), Fair Labor Standards Act, CCC jobs, ended the ruinous gold standard, ended the economic contraction, Wagner Act, farm supports, and GI Bill."
"This is volume one of the classic two-volume biography of Roosevelt by Burns. Roosevelt emerges as a cunning master-politician, hence the title (taken from Machiavelli). Volume two is the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Roosevelt: Soldier of Freedom.""
"This classic won the Pulitzer Prize, Francis Parkman Prize, and National Book Award. It is a history of World War II and biography of FDR. It is volume two of the two-volume FDR biography by James MacGregor Burns."
"This superb production won numerous awards. The story is based largely on the Pulitzer-Prize winning book "Eleanor and Roosevelt," making this DVD mostly from Eleanor's perspective. Fascinating history and great entertainment. Excellent acting. Highest recommendation."
"Winner of the National Book Award for nonfiction. This is a simply incredible book about the severe catastrophe during the Great Depression called the Dust Bowl. A depression hit agriculture long before the collapse on Wall Street due to excess production during WWI. Coolidge did nothing to fix this. Also read John Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize winning "Grapes of Wrath.""
"This history of the Great Depression won the Francis Parkman Prize and Bancroft Prize. Volume I details the decade before the economic collapse when the seeds of the disaster were sown and then the collapse from 1929 to 1933. Volume II covers FDR's first term beginning in 1933."
"NY Times columnist and Princeton economist Paul Krugman won the Nobel Prize in economics. In this easy-to-read book he details that the New Deal created a huge middle class and booming economic growth for the middle class for several decades. He shows how we later diverged from that and what we should do today."
"Roosevelt did not want anyone to know he was a paraplegic who could not move his body below his waist. His vibrant personality, confident optimism and silver tongue conveyed a vigorous image. He was a strong man. Also read "Hidden Campaign.""
"This book won the Pulitzer Prize. It is a great history of the events leading to the Great Depression. Financiers made mistakes. The financial system was flawed, including a flawed version of the gold standard, money supply errors, World War I reparations, leveraged speculation, few financial regulations and a lack of good leadership. FDR removing USA from the gold standard and recovery ensued."
"FDR's impact on the Supreme Court and the Constitution was enormous -- certainly among the biggest of any leader in American history. His court packing plan damaged his political capital substantially and was a big defeat. But he won the larger war. "The switch in time that saved nine.""
"Franklin Roosevelt was clever. Warren Kimball was a great scholar of foreign policy during World War II. In this concise and readable book, he explains FDR's foreign policy. Roosevelt said, "I am a juggler" and that he would do whatever it took to win the war against Hitler, even if it meant being cunning."
"Franklin Roosevelt profoundly changed the world with his vision for the post-war world. His Four Freedoms gave the war meaning. His moving words aimed for a world based on human rights and collective security. Colonialism and Nazism fell, and Communism would eventually fall to this new world of freedom."
"This book won the Bancroft Prize. It is the definitive scholarly history of Franklin Roosevelt's foreign policy. Also read Warren Kimball's "The Juggler" and Conrad Black's "Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Champion of Freedom," which emphasizes FDR's foreign policy."
"This is probably the best written history of FDR's Hundred Days and his energetic response to the Great Depression for 3 years under Hoover. The influences of the people in FDR's inner circle, such as Harry Hopkins and Frances Perkins, are detailed. Hopkins and Perkins were especially important. However, much of the New Deal happened after the first 100 days, such as Social Security."
"Outstanding history and writing! The world today was monumentally changed during the diplomacy of World War II. FDR favored freedom for the people of the world based on the Atlantic Charter (based on his Four Freedoms.) Churchill tried to preserve the British Empire and colonialism. USSR sought a security buffer in East Europe. The Cold War emerged during WWII. FDR’s vision won in the long-run."
"This is a very brief and very good biography of FDR, if that is what you are looking for. There are several other outstanding full-length biographies of FDR that would be better. (See the books at the top of this list.)"
"...and this is volume two of Schlesinger's award winning history of the Great Depression era. This volume emphasized the first 100 days of Roosevelt's presidency. However, this book is a little outdated."
"This is an outstanding history of the laissez-faire conservative movement that reacted (some would say overreacted) to the New Deal. This movement culminated in Ronald Reagan, who idolized FDR and was a New Dealer but changed."
"When asked by a reporter what his philosophy was, FDR replied, "Philosophy? I'm just a Christian and a Democrat." FDR was a Christian president. He attended a Christian school and repeatedly mentioned Christianity in his speeches. Roosevelt destroyed the Godless Nazism. One of his Four Freedoms was Freedom of Worship. FDR was compassionate and created the safety net, including Social Security."
"A classic and still the best book on the subject. Kimball specialized in the relationship between FDR and Churchill, including writing the best book on Lend Lease. He also was a scholar of FDR's foreign policy."