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Remaking the Presidency: Roosevelt, Taft, and Wilson, 1901-1916 Paperback – September 3, 2009
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“Arnold’s fresh perspectives concerning Progressive Era politics will delight anyone interested in the period. Likewise, the reflections about the development of the presidency are thought provoking, particularly Arnold’s conclusion that the successes and failures of these three men did not blaze a trail straight to the ‘modern presidency.’”—Journal of American History
“Arnold has made an important contribution to our understanding of the era. His analytical methods, which rely on the tools of political science and history, will cause readers to rethink their views of these presidencies. Though aimed at academic readers, this quite readable book deserves a wider audience.”—Washington Times
“Combines broad and illuminating analysis of executive leadership style with an informative account of the social forces resulting in the Progressive Era. . . . Effectively and convincingly places the three executives’ impact on the evolution of the presidency during this era of political and social change.”—Presidential Studies Quarterly
"Arnold’s cases and argument are persuasive. . . . Arnold has written a captivating book—steady on working through mounds of material to formulate a coherent, sensible, and cogent interpretation of changes in presidential leadership in the Progressive era."—Congress & the Presidency
"For political scientists, [this book] joins other distinguished works on the presidency in the APD literature by the likes of Stephen Skowronek, Jeffrey Tulis, and Sidney Milkis in demonstrating the richness of insights that have been gleaned from treating the office historically. For historians, the book approaches some much-studied personalities and events in a different light, offering categories for comparative analysis that scholars of the Progressive Era might fruitfully employ to revisit what has often seemed a topic they have thought they know all too well."—Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era
"Provides a broad overview and background for the study of the presidency during the Progressive Era and a needed piece of the puzzle for considering the broad changes in the office that resulted from this period."—Register of the Kentucky Historical Society
"A superior volume notable for its compositional clarity coupled with a keen analysis of the period. ...This political history, simultaneously concise, analytical, and compelling, will prove to be among the best works on this period. Essential."—Choice
“An engaging and persuasive account of presidential leadership in the Progressive Era. The reader comes away with a renewed appreciation for the political skills of these three presidents as well as a heightened sensitivity to the institutional constraints and opportunities each faced.”―Richard Ellis, author of Presidential Travel: The Journey from George Washington to George W. Bush
“A very important book that will strengthen Arnold’s reputation as America’s foremost institutional historian of the presidency.”―Benjamin Ginsberg, coauthor of Presidential Power: Unchecked and Unbalanced
From the Back Cover
"An engaging and persuasive account of presidential leadership in the Progressive Era. The reader comes away with a renewed appreciation for the political skills of these three presidents as well as a heightened sensitivity to the institutional constraints and opportunities each faced."--Richard Ellis, author of Presidential Travel: The Journey from George Washington to George W. Bush
"A very important book that will strengthen Arnold's reputation as America's foremost institutional historian of the presidency."--Benjamin Ginsberg, coauthor of Presidential Power: Unchecked and Unbalanced
Top customer reviews
The book is symmetrically organized, using the same method for all three men. The selection of only a few cases for each may seem insufficient to make such broad generalizations, but more would have belabored the point. The book is strongest on Roosevelt, which is not surprising, but I found the writing most compelling (and most sympathetic) on Taft. The project is principally well-penned, though the occasional parade of preferred pronouncements is perhaps not pertinent. That said, the book is an enjoyable read, and makes a complex argument easy to grasp.
Altogether, an excellent book for anyone who wishes to understand the era, its leaders, and the development of the presidency. Incidentally, this book is another in the line of solid works from the University Press of Kansas on Roosevelt and the Progressive Era. As readers, we are very lucky that some editor over there is as interested in this material as we are, and knows how to put out good books.