Imperfect Presidents by Jim Cullen
Tales of Misadventure and Triumph

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Synopsis

When people make bad decisions, odd remarks, and just plain silly mistakes, the results are sure to haunt them. But when these things happen to the president of the United States, they can change the course of history. In this clever portrait of the American presidency, Jim Cullen takes ten presidents down from their pedestals by examining key missteps in their careers--and how they transcended them. Examples include Abraham Lincoln smearing a preacher and rediscovering his religious vision in emancipating slaves; Lyndon Johnson's electoral fraud in his 1948 Senate race and his role in the signing of the Voting Rights Act; and Ronald Reagan's subversion of the Constitution in the Iran-Contra affair and affirmation of world peace in helping bring about the end of the Cold War. Targeting Republicans and Democrats alike, Cullen's insights are surprisingly timely and hugely entertaining.
 

About Jim Cullen

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Jim Cullen teaches history at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School in New York City. Cullen, a former Preceptor in the Expository Writing Program at Harvard University, is the author of several books, including The American Dream: A Short History of an Idea that Shaped a Nation (2003) and the forthcoming, provisionally titled Sensing the Past: Hollywood Actors as Historians.
 
Published March 20, 2007 by Palgrave Macmillan Trade. 256 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, War, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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Eleven presidents examined closely for their most salient errors—but all viewed within the contexts of their personal histories and their times.

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