Faculty Book: John Patrick Diggins
John Patrick Diggins
Ronald Reagan: Fate, Freedom, and the Making of History
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(W. W. Norton, 2006)
This book reveals the fortieth president to be an exemplar of the truest conservative values. According to John Patrick Diggins, Ronald Reagan was marginalized following his departure from office, thanks to liberal biases that dominate the teaching of American history. Yet Reagan, like Lincoln (who was also attacked for decades after his death), deserves to be regarded as one of our three or four greatest presidents. He was far more active as president and far more sophisticated than we ever knew; his negotiations with Mikhail Gorbachev and his opposition to foreign interventions demonstrate that he was not a rigid hawk; and in his pursuit of Emersonian ideals in his distrust of big government, he was the most open-minded libertarian president the country has ever had, combining a reverence for America's hallowed historical traditions with an implacable faith in the limitless opportunities of the future. Jack Diggins is a distinguished professor of history at The Graduate Center.
Submitted on: FEB 6, 2007
Category: Faculty Books, History