In Praise of Nepotism: A History of Family Enterprise from King David to George W. Bush

In Praise of Nepotism: A History of Family Enterprise from King David to George W. Bush

by Adam Bellow

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Overview

In Praise of Nepotism: A History of Family Enterprise from King David to George W. Bush by Adam Bellow

Nepotism is one of those social habits we all claim to deplore in America; it offends our sense of fair play and our pride in living in a meritocracy. But somehow nepotism prevails; we all want to help our own and a quick glance around reveals any number of successful families whose sons and daughters have gone on to accomplish objectively great things, even if they got a little help from their parents.

In this wide-ranging, surprising, and eloquently argued book, Adam Bellow takes a pragmatic and erudite look at the innate human inclination toward nepotism. From ancient Chinese clans to the papal lineages of the Renaissance, to American families like the Gores, Kennedys, and Bushes, Bellow explores how nepotism has produced both positive and negative effects throughout history. As he argues, nepotism practiced badly or haphazardly is an embarrassment to all (including the incompetent beneficiary), but nepotism practiced well can satisfy a deep biological urge to provide for our children and even benefit society as a whole. In Praise of Nepotism is a judicious look at a controversial but timeless subject that has never been explored with such depth or candor, and a fascinating natural history of how families work.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781400079025
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/13/2004
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 699 KB

About the Author

Adam Bellow is the former editorial director of the Free Press and is currently an editor-at-large for Doubleday. His articles and reviews have appeared in Talk, National Review, and The Atlantic Monthly, where a section of this book appeared.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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