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Will Rogers: A Political Life


Will Rogers: A Political Life Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

He was the top male box office attraction at the movies, one of the most widely read newspaper columnists in America, a radio commentator with an audience of more than 60 million, and a globetrotting speaker who filled lecture halls across the land. But how did humorist Will Rogers also become one of the most powerful political figures of his day?From just before World War I, through the Roaring Twenties, Prohibition, and the Great Depression, Rogers provided a refreshing yet sobering appraisal of current events and public policy. Through him, millions formed their opinion of President Wilsons quest for a League of Nations, debated freedom of speech and religion during the Scopes Monkey Trial, questioned the success of several disarmament conferences, took pity upon the sufferers of the Great Flood of 1927, and tried to grasp the awful reality of the Great Depression.Rogers visited Washington often to attend congressional sessions and official receptions, testify at hearings, meet with cabinet officers, and speak at the exclusive Gridiron and Alfalfa Clubs. His open access to the Oval Office, the Senate cloakroom, and other inner sancta of national power was unmatched for someone not holding public office.In this groundbreaking biography Richard D. White argues that the nations most popular entertainer was not only an incisive political commentator but also a significant influence upon national leaders and their decisions. When Will Rogers perished in a plane crash in Alaska in 1935, Americans lost their most popular and beloved humorist, a man who put smiles on their faces, took their minds off war and depression and, for a moment, allowed them to laugh at his cracker-barrel humor and ultimately themselves. But Americans also lost their most trusted source of reason, a man who, more than any other, broke down the complex issues of the day and gave them a critically honest appraisal of American politics and world affairs.

Book News Annotation:

As America's most popular humorist from before World War I through the Great Depression, Will Rogers (1879-1935) also had a serious side. White (public administration, Louisiana State U.) begins this biography with Rogers' presence in Manchuria to assess Japanese fighting capability there, then traces his career, political views, and involvement in public policy debates and humanitarian causes. The biography includes interesting anecdotes, photographs, and extensive reference material. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)


An insightful biography of the humorist who shaped a nation

About the Author

Richard D. White, Jr., a former senior officer in the U.S. Coast Guard and icebreaker captain, received his Ph.D. from Penn State University. The author of Roosevelt the Reformer: Theodore Roosevelt as Civil Service Commissioner 1889-1895 and Kingfish: The Reign of Huey P. Long, he is a professor of public administration and an associate dean at Louisiana State University. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Product Details

White, Richard D
Texas Tech University Press
White Jr, Richard D.
White, Richard D.
Richard D. White, Jr.
Edition Description:
Publication Date:
9.25 x 6.13 x 1.3 in

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Film and Television » Actors » Biographies
Biography » General
Biography » Historical
Biography » Political

Will Rogers: A Political Life Used Hardcover
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Product details 380 pages Texas Tech University Press - English 9780896726765 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , An insightful biography of the humorist who shaped a nation
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