Let Us Talk of Many Things: The Collected Speechesby William F. Buckley Jr.
William F. Buckley Jr. has long been admired for his remarkable gifts as a writer, debater, and orator. The man who helped ignite the modern conservative movement has for the past fifty years played a significant role in the great social debates that have shaped our country and indeed the world. In the course of his long career, he has given hundreds of speeches to generations of listeners. He has talked of many things -- from the Cold War to the passing of dear friends, from moral decay to the joys of sailing the open seas, from the defense of liberty to the comfort of faith. Here, collected for the first time, are Buckley's most memorable speeches, spanning five decades -- from the precocious Yale student's Class Day address in 1950 to the elder commentator's accumulated wisdom at century's end. The speeches are one-of-a-kind snapshots that capture the breadth and depth of the ideological wars fought during our country's most turbulent days. They are also richly worded masterpieces of wit, eloquence, and persuasion. Including new commentary from the author that provides historical context for his speeches, this book is a celebration of an extraordinary public life.
The Weekly Standard
- Crown Publishing Group
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.04(w) x 8.98(h) x 1.26(d)
What People are saying about this
Let Us Talk of Many Things is an astonishing book. Each speech is completely, compellingly, wonderfully readable--every single one of them.
Reading Bill Buckley's collected speeches, which cover the last half of the 20th century, is an exhilarating experience. The cogency of his arguments and his delivery are so extraordinarily persuasive that if this collection is as widely read as it should be, it will cause havoc in liberal salons. This is one of the few books devoted to the thoughts of one person that will be read from cover to cover.
In one of the speeches collected here, Bill Buckley instructs a class of eighteen-year-olds on their paramount responsibility-to enjoy yourself as you go. There lies the key to Buckley's extraordinary career, which like this book spans a half century (and counting), from pre-Korea to post-Lewinsky. Whether as novelist, editor, prose stylist, or public speaker, he always makes clear the pleasure he derives from intellectual engagement. The pleasure is infectious, and anyone who reads this exhilarating book will catch it too.
The book is perfect for either the bathroom or a desert island-either for a quick fix or the one book for a lifetime of isolation.
Since young Buckley took Yale to task almost 50 years ago, he has been taking the English language out for invigorating romps. As a result, his collected speeches are a high-spirited tour through the great controversies that have shaped both politics and culture. If you doubt that, or wonder why it is that Bill Buckley is the most consequential journalist and most skillful controversialist of our time, this delightful volume is for you. It is also for any reader who relishes wit in the service of moral convictions.
Meet the Author
William F. Buckley Jr. (19252008) was the author and editor of over fifty works of fiction and nonfiction. The founder and former editor-in-chief of National Review and former host of “Firing Line,” he was one of the intellectual leaders of the right from the 1950s until his death in 2008. His syndicated column, “On the Right,” was begun in 1962. He served as a CIA agent in the early 1950s, helped found the Young Americans for Freedom in 1960, and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by George H.W. Bush in 1991. His most recent work of nonfiction, FlyingHigh, an appreciation of Barry Goldwater, was published by Basic Books in 2007.
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