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Profiles in Courage CD Audio CD – Abridged, Audiobook, CD
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"A book that deserves reading by every American." -- Springfield Republican --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) was president of the United States from 1961 to 1963. At forty-three, he was the youngest man ever elected to the Oval Office and the first Roman Catholic president.
Top Customer Reviews
First, of course, is that the author is nothing short of American royalty and the publication of the book in 1956 had an instantaneous impact on Kennedy's political fortunes. In the late 1950s, JFK was a freshman senator without many notable achievements. "Profiles" immediately set him apart from his Congressional colleagues and established him as something of an intellectual heavyweight in Washington and garnered valuable publicity that ultimately vaulted him to the 1960 Democratic nomination and the presidency.
Second, never before has a work of non-fiction been so immediately embroiled in controversy, both because of questions concerning its composition and the fact that it won the 1957 Pulitzer Prize for biography. The consensus today -- nearly half-a-century after its publication and after intense scrutiny -- is that the book was essentially written by committee. JFK may have provided the inspiration for the work, but close aide and confidant Ted Sorensen did most of the heavy lifting around research and writing. In other words, Kennedy was more the "editor" than the "author." Indeed, Herbert Parmet investigated the "who wrote Profiles?" question in detail in his 1980 book "Jack: The Struggle of John F. Kennedy" and concluded that there was no evidence from reams of hand-written notes and memos that JFK contributed anything substantial to the final version of the book. This after Kennedy threatened to sue ABC for millions after syndicated columnist Drew Pearson alleged that the book was ghostwritten during a 1957 appearance on the Mike Wallace Show, an allegation ABC was forced to retract.Read more ›
Each man gets at most a chapter, and so Kennedy limited himself to one or two important events in their political careers, often their last stand. Not only are these men admirable but they are also very real. He manages to show us the human, less than perfect, side of each while convincing us of their moral strength. Each chapter leaves you wanting to know more about these men, who helped to shape American history.
The nice part about the book, and probably the key reason it won a Pulitzer, is that each event reads like a thriller. These are interesting stories and because Kennedy wrote them in chronological order with a few historic segues, the whole thing holds together to give us a better feel for the sweep of history. We willingly learn about the underlying currents that can inexorably drive a country in a certain direction.
"Profiles in Courage," is an easy read that teaches as it entertains. Kennedy seems to be encouraging us to look back at a past where "politician" was not a dirty word and in so doing, we are left with the suspicion that Kennedy himself, was trying to live up to those outmoded ideals. Knowing his fate, every word seems to have a poignant aura that makes it all the more memorable.
At a time when many of us are questioning the character and the ambitions of our political leaders, this book is a worthy reminder to us that a few good people can make the difference. This book is timely and pertinent when cyncism abounds in the minds of many voters and taxpayers.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is inspirational. Reading about people who stood up for what they believed in (right or wrong), helps me to understand why it is not always expedient to follow the... Read morePublished 6 days ago by Neekohl R
So glad to read this and learn about these wonderful, courageous , thoughtful, determined, self less people.Published 1 month ago by Mary Etta Layden
excellent book - stories of people with integrity, who stood up for what was right. for better or worse, they did the right thing. terrific.Published 1 month ago by Perspectech
This is one of the most powerful books that I read in junior high school. The profiles helped my as a young man to realize being true to yourself is more important than being a... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Kerry Carney
Although this book has been around for decades (obviously) I have never read it. Glad I did. Nice profiles of not as well known men in Washington politics that stood for their... Read morePublished 1 month ago by phyllis whitmyer firstname.lastname@example.org