Catalogue

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Theodore Roosevelt and the American political tradition /
Jean M. Yarbrough.
imprint
Lawrence : University Press of Kansas, c2012.
description
xiii, 337 p.
ISBN
0700618864 (cloth : alk. paper), 9780700618866 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Lawrence : University Press of Kansas, c2012.
isbn
0700618864 (cloth : alk. paper)
9780700618866 (cloth : alk. paper)
contents note
The education of Theodore Roosevelt -- History lessons : Roosevelt's America -- Republican reformer -- Introduction to executive power -- Executive power and republican government -- Progressive crusader -- Epilogue : the "heirs" of Theodore Roosevelt.
catalogue key
8585094
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2013-05-01:
Many books have been written about Theodore Roosevelt the man, but Yarbrough (Bowdoin College) admirably captures Roosevelt the thinker. The true value of Yarbrough's book, however, is not its exegesis of Roosevelt, sound as that is, but in its compelling representation of Roosevelt as an avatar of profound shifts in American political thinking. The main elements of this shift are the replacement of the mechanisms of constitutional politics with the organicism of German state theory; the shift to presidential politics as the embodiment of the new nationalism; the alterations of the Framers' ideas of human nature and liberty; and the problematic resolution of the tensions between liberty and equality in the idea of fraternity. Yarbrough adroitly contrasts Roosevelt's emergent Progressivism with the traditional ideas found in the Declaration of Independence, demonstrating how the Progressive movement reconstituted US politics. Her sense of Roosevelt's place in the American political tradition is sure. Yarbrough gives a full accounting of the race-based and scientistic (Darwinian) assumptions that undergirded Roosevelt's aspirations toward national greatness and large-scale communitarian politics. The book is written in an accessible, clear style. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readership levels. J. J. Polet Hope College
Appeared in Library Journal on 2012-10-01:
While criticism of Theodore Roosevelt (TR) often addresses beliefs that he was a colonialist, imperialist, racist, sexist, and priggish, Yarbrough, (political science, Bowdoin College; American Virtues: Thomas Jefferson on the Character of a Free People) focuses here on TR's political thought. She finds him wanting and critiques him for repeatedly departing from the principles of The Federalist by morphing from a moderate Republican reformer who believed in the golden mean into a "progressive radical" whose thinking posed a danger to constitutionalism. His "stewardship theory" of presidential power condemns him and those like him. Yet nowhere in this account does the author mention the restraint instilled in him that prevented him and his distant cousin from becoming dictators. TR's martial fantasies are better explained by his having once been a sickly, 99-pound weakling who repeatedly needed to prove to himself and others that he was one of the fit. VERDICT Certain to spark controversy among historians and political scientists, TR enthusiasts will be offended by this scholarly dismissal, just as they were similarly outraged by James Bradley's recent popular treatment of TR's foreign policy (The Imperial Cruise). Both books provoke interest but suffer from one-dimensional viewpoints.-William D. Pederson, Louisiana State Univ. Shreveport (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Library Journal, October 2012
Choice, May 2013
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Here, Yarbrough argues that Theodore Roosevelt's early historical studies - inspired by Darwinian biology and Hegelian political thought - treated westward expansion from an evolutionary and developmental perspective that placed race and conquest at the centre of the narrative, while relegating individual rights and consent of the governed to the sidelines.
Bowker Data Service Summary
Yarbrough argues that Theodore Roosevelt's early historical studies - inspired by Darwinian biology and Hegelian political thought - treated westward expansion from an evolutionary and developmental perspective that placed race and conquest at the centre of the narrative, while relegating individual rights and consent of the governed to the sidelines.
Main Description
Rough Rider, hunter, trust-buster, president, and Bull Moose candidate. Biographers have long fastened on TR as man of action, while largely ignoring his political thought. Now, in time for the centennial of his Progressive run for the presidency, Jean Yarbrough provides a searching examination of TRs political thought, especially in relation to the ideas of Washington, Hamilton, and Lincoln-the statesmen TR claimed most to admire. Yarbrough sets out not only to explore Roosevelts vision for America but also to consider what his political ideas have meant for republican self-government. She praises TR for his fighting spirit, his love of country, and efforts to promote republican greatness, but faults him for departing from the political principles of the more nationalistic Founders he esteemed. With the benefit of hindsight, she argues that the progressive policies he came to embrace have over time undermined the very qualities Roosevelt regarded as essential to civic life. In particular, the social welfare policies he championed have eroded industry and self-reliance; the expansion of the regulatory state has multiplied the special interests seeking access to political power; and the bureaucratic experts in whom he reposed such confidence have all too often turned out to be neither disinterested nor effective. Yarbrough argues that TRs early historical studies-inspired by Darwinian biology and Hegelian political thought-treated westward expansion from an evolutionary and developmental perspective that placed race and conquest at the center of the narrative, while relegating individual rights and consent of the governed to the sidelines. Although his early career showed him to be a moderate Republican reformer, Yarbrough argues that even then he did not share Hamiltons enthusiasm for the commercial republic, and substituted an appeal to "abstract duty" for The Federalists reliance on self-interest. As New York governor and first-term president, TR attempted to strike a "just balance" between democratic and oligarchic interests, but by the end of his presidency he had tipped the balance in favor of progressive policies. From the New Nationalism until his death in 1919, Roosevelt continued to claim the mantle of Washington and Lincoln, even as he moved further from their political principles. Through careful examination of TRs political thought, Yarbroughs book sheds new light on his place in the American political tradition, while enhancing our understanding of the roots of progressivism and its transformation of the founders Constitution.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
The Education of Theodore Rooseveltp. 10
Evolutionary Biology and Social Darwinismp. 13
The Hegelian Moment in American Politicsp. 19
Fair Harvardp. 24
Decisionsp. 33
A Legal Education and Morep. 36
John W. Burgess and the German Connectionp. 38
When Theory Meets Practicep. 46
History Lessons: Roosevelt's Americap. 50
Biography and "Autobiography": Thomas Hart Benton and Gouverneur Morrisp. 53
The Winning of the Westp. 67
Racep. 74
The Foundingp. 77
Progress of Liberty vs. Progress of Growth and Expansionp. 82
Republican Reformerp. 84
Rubbing Up Against the Machinep. 85
Geography and the American Characterp. 88
Battling Political Corruption in All Its Formsp. 91
Immigration and the Limits of Assimilationp. 94
Responsible Governmentp. 97
Civil Service Reformp. 99
Police Commissioner and the Election of 1896p. 104
The Manly Virtues and Warp. 108
Reform and the Foundersp. 118
Introduction to Executive Powerp. 122
The Executive in Actionp. 125
Governing in Prose: A New Rhetoricp. 130
The Literary Governor: Oliver Cromwell and the "Master Spirit"p. 133
Executive Power and Republican Governmentp. 138
The Anthracite Coal Strike and the "Stewardship" Theory of Executive Powerp. 140
Inherent Powers and Constitutional Limitationsp. 148
The Antitrust Approach to Controlling Corporate Powerp. 150
The Toils of Railroad Regulationp. 155
The Bureau of Corporations and the New Regulatory Orderp. 163
The Conservation Movement and the Growth of National Powerp. 169
"Stewardship" in Foreign Affairsp. 178
The Balance Tipsp. 187
Progressive Crusaderp. 194
European Tourp. 195
The Croly Connectionp. 205
The New Nationalismp. 211
The New Nationalism and Popular Rulep. 220
The Man in the Arenap. 227
Direct Democracy and Characterp. 233
The Conservation of Human Resourcesp. 237
The Road to Armageddonp. 239
Bull Moosep. 242
Progressives in the Wildernessp. 249
Epilogue: The "Heirs" of Theodore Rooseveltp. 257
Notesp. 273
Indexp. 333
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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