Political Woman by Peter Collier
The Big Little Life of Jeane Kirkpatrick

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 1 Critic Review

Peter Collier's "Political Woman: The Big Little Life of Jeane Kirkpatrick" is a gracefully written and nuanced biography that captures both the significance of Kirkpatrick's achievements and the complexity of her thought and personality.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

This is the first and only biography of Jeane Kirkpatrick, who became an iconic figure in the 1980s as Ronald Reagan's UN ambassador and the most forceful presence in the administration, outside of the President himself, in shaping the Reagan Doctrine and fighting the Cold War to a victorious conclusion.

Political Woman traces the complex interlock between Kirkpatrick's personal and professional lives using her as yet unarchived private papers and extensive interviews with her and her family and with dozens of friends and associates. The portrait that emerges, filled with character and anecdote, is of an ambitious woman from the epicenter of middle America determined to break through the multi dimensional glass ceilings of her time and place.

A pioneering feminist who would be hated by the feminist movement because of her association with Reagan and neo conservatism, she began her career in the post war period as an academic focusing on the subject of totalitarianism. She fell in love with a married man, Evron Kirkpatrick, who had been a close aide to "Wild Bill" Donovan in the wartime OSS and who would help form the CIA after the war.

A leading professor at Georgetown, she also became an important Democratic Party activist. Dismayed by what she saw as McGovern's trashing of the Roosevelt coalition and by Carter's capitulation to Soviet advances, she led a group of Democratic liberals who felt homeless in the radicalized and "Blame America First" (a phrase from her famous 1984 Republican convention speech) Party into the Reagan administration. As Reagan's UN representative, Jeanette sharpened the spearpoint of a rearmed America ready to join the final battle of the Cold War, in the process staging dramatic battles with figures like Alexander Haig and George Schultz over policy toward the Soviets, the Cubans, and the Contras.

This book tells this parallel story--the flight of centrist liberals out of the Democratic Party and into neoconservatism and the complex chess match of the end game of the Cold War--through the intimate story of a woman who was at the center of these interconnected dramas and who kept resurfacing until her death in 2006, most notably for posthumously breaking ranks with her fellow neoconservatives on the war in Iraq. It also shows the price she paid for her achievements in a private life filled with sorrow and loss as profound as her epic personal achievements.
 

About Peter Collier

See more books from this Author
Peter Collier was the founding editor of Encounter Books and currently acts as a consultant. He has worked as an author and editor for the last thirty years. During that time, he has written novels, short stories and screenplays, along with best selling biographies. Referred to in the New York Times as "America's premier biographer of dynastic tragedy," Collier is best known for The Rockefellers: An American Dynasty; The Kennedys: An American Dream; The Fords: An American Epic; and Destructive Generation (all with David Horowitz). He is also the author of The Fondas: A Hollywood Dynasty and The Roosevelts: An American Saga. Recent books include Medal of Honor: Portraits of Valor Beyond the Call of Duty, with photographs by Nick Del Calzo, and The Anti-Chomsky Reader, co-edited with David Horowitz.
 
Published May 29, 2012 by Encounter Books. 274 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for Political Woman
All: 1 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 0

WSJ online

Good
Reviewed by Carl Gershman on May 25 2012

Peter Collier's "Political Woman: The Big Little Life of Jeane Kirkpatrick" is a gracefully written and nuanced biography that captures both the significance of Kirkpatrick's achievements and the complexity of her thought and personality.

Read Full Review of Political Woman: The Big Litt... | See more reviews from WSJ online

Reader Rating for Political Woman
85%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 19 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


Rate this book!

Add Review
×