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George Washington: Foundation of Presidential Leadership and Character

Overview

There have been many serious abuses of presidential power in recent decades, including Watergate, the Iran-Contra scandal, and the Lewinsky affair, subsequently Americans have demonstrated renewed interest in discussing the relationship between character and political leadership. Through an investigation of the life and career of George Washington, often considered the exemplary moral president, the chapters offer a balanced scholarly contribution to this analysis.

Fishman, ...

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Overview

There have been many serious abuses of presidential power in recent decades, including Watergate, the Iran-Contra scandal, and the Lewinsky affair, subsequently Americans have demonstrated renewed interest in discussing the relationship between character and political leadership. Through an investigation of the life and career of George Washington, often considered the exemplary moral president, the chapters offer a balanced scholarly contribution to this analysis.

Fishman, Pederson, Rozell, and their contributors examine the legacy of Washingtons presidency. Leading political scientists and historians describe and evaluate the impact of Washington's leadership on the institution of the presidency and on those who have since occupied the Oval Office. In the contemporary era of almost endless speculation about the role of character in presidential leadership, an analysis of Washington's character and the model he established is especially germane.

The chapters provide diverse interpretations of the value of understanding Washington's leadership and the character of the modern presidency. Some of the scholars conclude that Washington indeed laid the foundation for good character and strong leadership in the presidency. Others take a more critical approach and see Washington, like many of his successors, as a fallible human being who possessed both character strengths and weaknesses. The lasting value of this analysis for political scientists, historians, and other students of the American presidency is that it demonstrates the continued vibrant debate over Washington's authentic legacy to the office.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275968687
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/30/2001
  • Pages: 250
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

ETHAN FISHMAN is Professor of Political Science at the University of South Alabama.

WILLIAM D. PEDERSON is Professor and Chair of the Department of History and Social Sciences at Louisiana State University in Shreveport.

MARK J. ROZELL is Associate Professor of Politics at The Catholic University of America.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Pt. I Evaluating Washington's Leadership and Character 1
1 The President as Moral Leader: George Washington in Contemporary Perspective 3
2 The Command of Its Own Fortunes: Reconsidering Washington's Farewell Address 19
3 Washington as Cincinnatus: A Model of Leadership 33
4 George Washington: Can Aristotle Recapture What His Countrymen Have Forgotten? 53
5 Duty, Honor, Country: Parallels in the Leadership of George Washington and Dwight David Eisenhower 71
6 The Foreign Policy of Republicanism: A Free Society in an Unfree World 99
7 Washington's Leadership: Prudence and the American Presidency 125
8 America's Presidential Triumvirate: Quantitative Measures of Character 143
Pt. II The Origins of Washington's Leadership and Character 163
9 The Young Washington: An Interpretive Essay 165
10 The Nature and Development of George Washington's Statesmanship: 1753-1783 183
11 Washington and the Specter of Cromwell 193
12 "A Compleat Gentleman": Congress's "Partiality" for George Washington in 1775 209
13 George Washington, Popular Sovereignty, and the Legitimacy of Revolution 219
Selected Bibliography 229
Index 233
About the Contributors 239
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