BN.com Gift Guide

Managing the President's Message: The White House Communications Operation

Hardcover (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $2.00
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 95%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (9) from $2.00   
  • New (3) from $32.14   
  • Used (6) from $2.00   

Overview

Political scientists are rarely able to study presidents from inside the White House while presidents are governing, campaigning, and delivering thousands of speeches. It’s even rarer to find one who manages to get officials such as political adviser Karl Rove or presidential counselor Dan Bartlett to discuss their strategies while those strategies are under construction. But that is exactly what Martha Joynt Kumar pulls off in her fascinating new book, which draws on her first-hand reporting, interviewing, and original scholarship to produce analyses of the media and communications operations of the past four administrations, including chapters on George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

Kumar describes how today’s White House communications and media operations can be at once in flux and remarkably stable over time. She describes how the presidential Press Office that was once manned by a single presidential advisor evolved into a multilayered communications machine that employs hundreds of people, what modern presidents seek to accomplish through their operations, and how presidents measure what they get for their considerable efforts.

Laced throughout with in-depth statistics, historical insights, and you-are-there interviews with key White House staffers and journalists, this indispensable and comprehensive dissection of presidential communications operations will be key reading for scholars of the White House researching the presidency, political communications, journalism, and any other discipline where how and when one speaks is at least as important as what one says.

Johns Hopkins University Press

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Today's burgeoning variety of news sources poses a real challenge for any political administration wishing to communicate agendas, priorities, and policy initiatives to the public. Kumar (political science, Towson Univ.) examines the White House Office of Communications (which began in the Nixon administration), with particularly detailed analysis of the Clinton and George W. Bush terms. She looks at the delicate balance between Presidents, who must use the press to communicate, and the media, which can play an adversarial role in covering them. She defines the White House's communications role as advocating for policies, defending the President from critics, and coordinating government-wide publicity. Having been a regular in the White House Press Room since the early years of the Clinton administration, Kumar can offer an insider's view. Her interviews with Communications Office staff from earlier administrations, such as Ford's and Reagan's, offer a rare look at day-to-day operations and strategies. For example, Dan Bartlett, White House communications director from 2001 to 2005, explains how his office reached out to unconventional media and sponsored a White House roundtable for George W. Bush to meet with correspondents from hunting, fishing, and wilderness magazines. Kumar notes that even as communications strategies vary, there is stability in the system across administrations. Political science and journalism scholars will appreciate the rich detail and scholarship here. Appropriate for most academic libraries.
—Judy Solberg

Political Studies Review
This is a well-written and detailed book and an ideal starting place from which to study the White House communications operations before moving on to fuller autobiographical accounts or the study of individual presidencies.

— Rob Griffiths

History Wire - Where the Past Comes Alive
A must-read for political junkies.
National Journal
Kumar combines her years of observation in the White House press room and hours of frank discussion with current and former officials to create a fascinating—and sometimes disheartening—history of how [the] dance has evolved over the last century.

— Jane Roh

Baltimore Sun
Some of the book is historical research, but much of it comes from the days and days that Kumar spends in the belly of the beast, hanging out in the press room in the West Wing of the White House.

— Michael Hill

Political Communication
Its place among scholarship on the presidency was quickly sealed when the presidency section of APSA awarded it the 2008 Richard E. Neustadt Award for best book on the presidency. The book is rich with detail regarding the Clinton and Bush communications and press operations... there is much to be mined in Kumar’s descriptions and explanations.

— Stephanie Burkhalter

Political Science Quarterly
Kumar's insightful Managing the President's Message provides much-needed insight, charting the recent changes in presidential media management strategies and in the routines practiced by the two most-recent White Houses, and provides an important addition to the academic discourse on political communication, framing, and leadership.
National Journal - Jane Roh
Kumar combines her years of observation in the White House press room and hours of frank discussion with current and former officials to create a fascinating—and sometimes disheartening—history of how [the] dance has evolved over the last century.
Baltimore Sun - Michael Hill
Some of the book is historical research, but much of it comes from the days and days that Kumar spends in the belly of the beast, hanging out in the press room in the West Wing of the White House.
Political Communication - Stephanie Burkhalter
Its place among scholarship on the presidency was quickly sealed when the presidency section of APSA awarded it the 2008 Richard E. Neustadt Award for best book on the presidency. The book is rich with detail regarding the Clinton and Bush communications and press operations... there is much to be mined in Kumar’s descriptions and explanations.
Political Studies Review - Rob Griffiths
This is a well-written and detailed book and an ideal starting place from which to study the White House communications operations before moving on to fuller autobiographical accounts or the study of individual presidencies.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801886522
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 7/28/2007
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.08 (d)

Meet the Author

Martha Joynt Kumar is a professor of political science at Towson University and the author and coauthor of several books on the media and the presidency, including the 1981 classic Portraying the President: The White House and the News Media, also published by Johns Hopkins.

Johns Hopkins University Press

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction xiii

1 Creating an Effective Communications Operation 1

2 The Communications Operation of President Bill Clinton 33

3 The Communications Operation of President George W. Bush 71

4 White House Communications Advisers 119

5 The Press Secretary to the President 178

6 The Gaggle and the Daily Briefing 222

7 Presidential Press Conferences 253

8 Managing the Message 283

9 Postscript 306

Notes 323

Index 351

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)