Why I'm a Democrat

Overview

"Why I'm a Democrat" is a book about politics that isn't too political. To reveal the heart of the party through the ties that bind its members, editor Susan Mulcahy has compiled a dazzling array of answers to the title question in the form of interviews, essays, emails, lists, and artwork. The result is a lively even slightly voyeuristic glimpse at what makes members of the party, from all across the country and from all walks of life, tick. Contributors include: Nora Ephron, Frank McCourt, Irma Thomas, Dominick Dunne, Isaac Mizrahi, Tama

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Overview

"Why I'm a Democrat" is a book about politics that isn't too political. To reveal the heart of the party through the ties that bind its members, editor Susan Mulcahy has compiled a dazzling array of answers to the title question in the form of interviews, essays, emails, lists, and artwork. The result is a lively even slightly voyeuristic glimpse at what makes members of the party, from all across the country and from all walks of life, tick. Contributors include: Nora Ephron, Frank McCourt, Irma Thomas, Dominick Dunne, Isaac Mizrahi, Tama Janowitz, Melissa Etheridge, Roz Chast, Craig Lesley, Jonathan Franzen, Frans de Waal, Maira Kalman, James Brady, Olympia Vernon, Paul Weitz, William Wegman, Seymour Chwast, James Naughton, Min Jin Lee and many others, including farmers, scientists, CEOs, union workers, former Republicans, and a Philly cheesesteak maker.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Mulcahy's compilation of pro-Democrat sentiment is an amusing if slight read. Purposefully devoid of entries by politicians, the collection attempts to capture the heart and soul of the party by asking 56 individuals-from A-list celebrities to smalltown waitresses and farmers-to explain their devotion to the Democrats. The best selections come from longtime party members such as writer James Brady, who cast his first Democratic vote for Adlai Stevenson in 1952, and Angela's Ashes author Frank McCourt, who couples praise for the party with a cogent critique of its education policies. Despite the wide selection, most of the snapshots are too brief to pique the reader's interest. Entries, such as the submission from The Corrections author Jonathan Franzen, read like harried e-mails ("I can't really think of what to say") and disappoint as even articulate contributors turn in glib and flimsy arguments. Nora Ephron writes, "I barely know a Republican," while designer Isaac Mizrahi says he's a Democrat because he's not "mean and selfish enough to be a Republican." Littered with vague platitudes ("The Helpful Party," "The Party of the Future"), this book is less a thoughtful commentary than a mildly diverting political sampler. (July)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780979482267
  • Publisher: PoliPointPress, LLC
  • Publication date: 7/4/2008
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 1,021,116
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents


Foreword   David Brock     ix
Introduction   Susan Mulcahy     1
The Party of a Lifetime     5
Irma Thomas
Nora Ephron
Hannah Sessions
Thomas Lauderdale
James Brady
James Naughton
Maira Kalman
The Helpful Party     29
Isaac Mizrahi
Dave Dederer
Ronald Davenport Sr.
Thomas Christopher Erkelens
Enid Duany Mendoza
Jon Elliott
Roz Chast
The Party of Liberty and Other Essentials     49
Tony Bennett
Amelia Ceja
Min Jin Lee
Melissa Etheridge
Seymour Chwast
The Good Business Party     67
Lisa Eue Kaliszewski
Bernard Rapoport
Jack Geiger
Frank E. Olivieri
Sheila McGee
Andrew Tobias
The Party of Former Independents     85
Frank McCourt
Lyndon Wong
Norman Solomon
Amanda Palmer
Random Thoughts on Democrats     99
The Family Party     103
Teri Hein
Barbara Janusiak
Hector "Tico" Betancourt
Rosita Worl
John TeKippe
The Party of the Reluctant-but-Registered     119
Camilo Jose Vergara
Tama Janowitz
Jonathan Franzen
The Everything Party     129
Carl Mehling
Paul Weitz
Libby Yarborough
Craig Lesley
Olympia Vernon
William Wegman
The Party of Ex-Grand Old Party-ers     149
Lee Papa
Elliot Anderson
Dominick Dunne
Ralph Swinehart
Ethel Chandler
Roland Johnson
Mary Hearing
The Party of the Future     169
Irwin Redlener
Shahed Amanullah
Kenneth Paul Block
Frans de Waal
Anna Bank
Acknowledgments     187
About the Editor     189
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