» » Blood of the Liberals

Download Blood of the Liberals fb2

by George Packer
Download Blood of the Liberals fb2
Politics & Government
  • Author:
    George Packer
  • ISBN:
    0374251428
  • ISBN13:
    978-0374251420
  • Genre:
  • Publisher:
    Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st edition (August 2000)
  • Pages:
    368 pages
  • Subcategory:
    Politics & Government
  • Language:
  • FB2 format
    1858 kb
  • ePUB format
    1329 kb
  • DJVU format
    1726 kb
  • Rating:
    4.1
  • Votes:
    181
  • Formats:
    doc lrf lrf docx


I've never read a book quite like George Packer's Blood of the Liberals

I've never read a book quite like George Packer's Blood of the Liberals. More than a learned history and revealing memoir, it's also an unsentimental but deeply felt love letter to the father he barely knew and the grandfather he never met. Packer shows American liberals where we've been and where we must go by sharing his story―a story that is heartbreaking, hopeful, and beautifully drawn. George Stephanopoulos.

George Packer's maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, was a populist congressman from Alabama in the early part of the century-an agrarian liberal in the Jacksonian mold who opposed the New Deal. Packer's father was a Kennedy-era liberal, a law professor and dean at Stanford whose convictions were sorely-and ultimately fatally-tested in the campus upheavals of the 1960s

George Packer's maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, was a populist congressman from Alabama in the . Packer's father was a Kennedy-era liberal, a law professor and dean at Stanford whose convictions were sorely-and ultimately fatally-tested in the campus upheavals of the 1960s. 合. George Packer的其他著作. The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America.

Blood of the liberals. Books for People with Print Disabilities. Internet Archive Books. Uploaded by on February 3, 2012. SIMILAR ITEMS (based on metadata). Terms of Service (last updated 12/31/2014).

George Packer's maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, was a populist congressman from Alabama in the early part of the century-an agrarian liberal in the Jacksonian . Blood of the Liberals - George Packer.

Blood of the Liberals book. An acclaimed journalist and novelist explores the legacy and. George Packer's maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, was a populist congressman from Alabama in the early part of the century-an agrarian liberal in the Jacksonian mold who opposed the New Deal. Packer's father was a An acclaimed journalist and novelist explores the legacy and future of American liberalism through the history of his family's politically active history.

George Packer bibliography. Packer, George (1988). The village of waiting. New York: Vintage Books. Blood of the liberals. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it. List of the published work of George Packer, American journalist, novelist, and playwright. The half man. New York: Random House. The fight is for democracy : winning the war of ideas in America and the world. New York: Harper Perennial. The Assassins' Gate : America in Iraq.

Packer’s maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, represented Birmingham, Alabama, in Congress from 1915 to 1937. A Southern Progressive, a Thomas Jefferson Democrat, he started out arguing for universal suffrage and unions; he quickly learned to avoid race and gender, but his class-based radicalism was firm until the New Deal’s elitist tinkering made him a state’s rights conservative.

An acclaimed journalist and novelist explores the legacy and future of American liberalism through the history of his family's politically active history George Packer's maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, was a populist congressman from Alabama in the early part of the century-an agrarian liberal in the Jacksonian mold who opposed the New Deal.

An acclaimed journalist and novelist explores the legacy and future of American liberalism through the history of his family's politically active historyGeorge Packer's maternal grandfather, George Huddleston, was a populist congressman from Alabama in the early part of the century--an agrarian liberal in the Jacksonian mold who opposed the New Deal. Packer's father was a Kennedy-era liberal, a law professor and dean at Stanford whose convictions were sorely--and ultimately fatally--tested in the campus upheavals of the 1960s. The inheritor of two sometimes conflicting strains of the great American liberal tradition, Packer discusses the testing of ideals in the lives of his father and grandfather and his own struggle to understand the place of the progressive tradition in our currently polarized political climate. Searching, engrossing, and persuasive, this is an original, intimate examination of the meaning of politics in American lives.

WOGY
Letter sent to the author, whom I knew in High School:

Dear George,

I’m reading your book, Blood of the Liberals, and am very impressed with the quality of your writing. However, despite the exquisite writing, reading your book is a very bittersweet experience, because you insist on ripping open the wounds that mar American history from our very inception, remorselessly exposing them to the light of day.

Your book reminds us that the American Dream all too often consists of staying asleep and oblivious to the nightmare that life in America is for all too many of its people. And that doesn’t include the many millions of victims around the world of her brutal wars of imperialism and regime change.

I was aware of the convict labor system of old Alabama. Some years back, I read the book by the Wall St. Journal reporter that reveals all of its horror. But I had no idea your family was connected to the struggle against this horrible system.

Your book weaves such an amazing tale of disparate cultures coming together under strange circumstances. I am only about 100 pages into it, but I think you have done a masterful job exploring your personal past and correlating it with the socio-economic trends in our history.

I have thought a lot about the issues you raise, but I hadn’t managed to articulate them so thoughtfully. Instead I proposed a series of ideas like hypotheses to try to make sense of our past.

Some of these ideas I’d like to share with you. Perhaps you can develop them more thoroughly. And you do not have to accredit me with them either!

(1) One idea is that America was born under the twin evils of rebellion and violence. I started thinking about this many years ago when I discovered that the founder of the Methodist Church I was then attending, John Wesley, actually condemned the American Revolution as a godless rebellion against the king G+D had appointed over the colonists. Wesley actually ordered all Methodist ministers serving in the colonies to return to England when the Revolution broke out. (And today it seems ironic that Methodism is the largest Protestant denomination in the USA!) Certainly compared to the tax burdens we face today, the complaints 240 years ago about British “taxation without representation” would seem to be laughable. I have asked many Christian pastors what the justification for this rebellion was, given the New Testament’s frequent exhortations to submit to ruling authorities, even those as evil as Nero! Invariably they either refuse to answer or obfuscate.

(2) It also strikes me that meaningful social change almost never happens in our country without being preceded by an outbreak of violence. John Brown’s attack on the Southern armory helped precipitate the Civil War. And certainly the Civil Rights movement under Martin Luther King and others experienced widespread violence and abuse. England outlawed slavery domestically and throughout all its colonies by legal fiat; however America had to resort to a terrible war, followed by another century of de facto slavery and racial division. Why should this be? When I lived in the South (North Carolina), I grew very cynical about the churches that would sing so ardently Amazing Grace, the hymn written by the Englishman who devoted his life to outlawing slavery in England while at the same time churches and synagogues were working overtime in the American South not only to perpetuate this system but to justify it on Biblical grounds! My impression is that generally speaking religious organizations in America are averse to social reform and almost always oppose it until it becomes inevitable, when they scramble to claim credit for their bogus progressivism.

(3) As you probably know, the Bible itself presents a kind of schizophrenic perspective on money and wealth. Generally the Old Testament sees wealth as a sign of Divine Favor. And while the New Testament Gospels speak disparagingly about wealth, the Book of Revelation seems to revert to the Old Testament mentality. (To pastors who claim that “The bible doesn’t condemn money, but only love of money”, I like to respond: “How much money does a man need just to prove he doesn’t really love it?!”) I think US history reflects this schizoid perspective. Generally the northern colonies embraced the ethic of the yeoman famer; while the south embraced the idea of large plantations run by a hopefully benevolent owner. The South also focused on agricultural production of addictive crops, like sugar and tobacco, that relied on slave labor. I think the ongoing American infatuation, so carefully and enthusiastically inculcated by the American mass media, with mega-rich celebrities sports stars and business tycoons can be traced to the original colonial idea of the plantation owner being a benevolent oligarch with a hoped-for propensity to philanthropy. Americans are all too willing to credit the Rockefeller Foundations while overlooking the unethical means by which they amassed their fortunes. To this day the American social contract seems to be undergirded with the horrible notion that so long as one person can strike it rich, it’s acceptable for 999 others to languish in poverty. This is the casino mentality that afflicts every aspect of our culture and makes it so terribly vulgar.

(4) In your recollections about your father, I am struck by how similar he seems to my own father. Although my father pursued medicine rather than law, in many respects they seem to have followed similar paths in life. Your father sounds like a very brilliant man. In recent years, as I’ve learned more about the Stanford Faculty members I grew up around, I have felt deep sorrow that I never was able to relate to them more on their level. For example, my friend Stephen Spitz’s father, Lewis, was a Reformation Era scholar who apparently knew ten languages. Whenever I visited Stephen his dad was always extremely taciturn; now I realize too late what an amazing treasure of knowledge he carried! Your dad seems similar. I am so impressed by his reading program while at war in the South Pacific. I am impressed that he got himself through Yale despite the anti-Semitism of its leaders. He really seems a remarkable man. My father told me of experiencing similar things at Harvard. Once he was laying phylacteries in his dorm room when a maid came in, saw him, and screamed! I only heard that story from my dad a few years ago; when I was growing up at Stanford he was almost totally mum about his Jewish background. I remember at my Bar Mitzvah meeting all sorts of mysterious relatives, including one who supposedly had underworld connections, whom I never saw again. When I was studying at yeshiva in Jerusalem and my parents came out for my wedding in 1985, I was astounded at my father’s familiarity with the yeshiva culture. On an afternoon visit he grasped precisely what was going on in the study hall and threw around some of the jargon we used. But of course none of this was apparent to me growing up. I imagine our father’s generation struggled to integrate their Jewish heritage with their American achievements. This has changed as he ages and reverts more and more to some of the customs of his youth. But he never discussed the ethnic origins of his family with his children. All I know is that they came from Galicia around the turn of the 20th century. Once a rabbi in Jerusalem told me some stories about my great-grandfather whom his father had known as a rabbi in Providence long ago. When I asked my father about this, he was unsure if the rabbi’s story was credible or not.

(5) I think the period you describe so wistfully, the post Word War II era of the burgeoning middle class, actually is the exception to the rule of American History. Perhaps I am just more cynical than you, but I believe the culture of rampant corruption you decry is the norm. I will never forget my shock when I returned to the US in 2006, after living overseas for 23 years, to see how dark American society had become. The media seem to be propaganda organs for the corporate-government rulers; and entertainment is increasingly banal and stultifying. My view now, after spending much of the past 16 years as a 9/11 Truth Activist, is that corporate America totally dominates the public by exploiting their every failure and weakness and that there is no hope for political reform. We have truly become a third world type banana republic ruled by a fascist oligarchy. And Hollywood is there to prevent anyone from noticing.

I thank you George for writing this very thought provoking book. Your perspective is truly unique, because your parents come from such radically different cultures. You really grew up in a microcosm of America in its ethnic entirety and complexity. I also am grateful that your mother, Nancy, shared with you so many stories and opened a window onto the past for you to gain the vision necessary to produce such a compelling book. Both of you are very brave to bare your souls in this manner and deserve our deepest respect.

If you have any thoughts to share I’d be honored to read them. And if you would like to expound further on any of the ideas I have listed above, in your own unique literary style, then be my guest. I am happy to render these concepts into your talented hands.
Iseared
A biography both of a family and of an institution, Stanford Univeristy, and of government. Brilliant writing, fine character delineation, impressive insights into all. An honest, generous, serious, enjoyable book.
Early Waffle
Product was as advertised
Morlurne
Great book.
Original
Excellent Read.
Malaunitly
How did such a basic, rational notion as liberalism turn into the favorite epithet of talk-show hosts? What happened to social justice? Where is the freewheeling spirit of the Sixties? These, and other questions, have haunted me for years. Not being well versed in American history, the seemingly abrupt annhiliation of everything "liberal" has caused me great puzzlement and distress.
Packer, in a beautiful amalgam of memoir and history, has written a book that has almost singlehandedly restored my relationship with the past and pointed my way to the future. While as a historical account it is spotty, and as a memoir it is sometimes dry, the heartfelt combination of these two styles has a vitality and immediacy I've never seen anywhere else.
His conclusions, while expansive, are also poignant, with a touch of desperation. In his consideration of the prospects of liberalism in this country, I am reminded of the Monty Python sketch about the parrot - "It's just resting!" - while at the same time I'm stirred by its undercurrent of optimism. His last few words ring in my ears: "We will have a more just society as soon as we want one."
If you sense that, like myself, you are a lost liberal that is trying to find your way in the world, this book is for you.
If you are a Rush Limbaugh dittohead who needs a clue as to what "liberal" really means, this book is for you as well.
JOIN
A 5 star book, elegantly
and clearly written.
A little bit of the soul of a world class non -fiction writer. Explains his generation of skepticism that is needed for one to be an exceptional reporter of which George Packer is one.