John F. Kennedy carried on a lifelong love affair with England and the English. From his speaking style to his tastes in art, architecture, theater, music, and clothes, his personality reflected his deep affinity for a certain kind of idealized Englishness. In Union Jack, noted biographer Christopher Sandford tracks Kennedy’s exploits in Great Britain between 1935 and 1963, and looks in-depth at the unique way Britain shaped JFK throughout his adult life and how JFK charmed British society.
This mutual affinity took place against a backdrop of some of the twentieth century’s most profound events: The Great Depression, Britain’s appeasement of Hitler, the Second World War, the reconstruction of Western Europe, the development and rapid proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and the ideological schism between East and West. Based on extensive archival work as well as firsthand accounts from former British acquaintances, including old girlfriends, Union Jack charts two paths in the life of JFK. The first is his deliberate, long-term struggle to escape the shadow of his father, Joseph Kennedy, former U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain. The second is the emergence of a peculiarly American personality whose consistently pro-British, rallying rhetoric was rivaled only by Winston Churchill. By explaining JFK’s special relationship with Great Britain, Union Jack offers a unique and enduring portrait of another side of this historic figure in the centennial year of his birth.
|Publisher:||University Press of New England|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.30(d)|
About the Author
CHRISTOPHER SANDFORD has written on pop culture and postwar affairs for a range of publications, including The Times, Rolling Stone, America, The Spectator, and others. He is the author of two dozen books, including Harold and Jack: The Remarkable Friendship of Prime Minister Macmillan and President Kennedy. He lives in Seattle and London.
Table of Contents
“Father Does Not Always Know Best”
My Trip Abroad
Why England Slept
A Very Broad Minded Approach to Everything
Europe’s New Order
John F. Kennedy Slept Here
“We Are Attempting to Prevent World War Three”
Harold and Jack
What People are Saying About This
“Union Jack is a fresh and richly-researched addition to the body of literature about John F. Kennedy. In it, Christopher Sandford delivers a colorful account of how JFK transcended his Irish heritage and his father’s antipathy to the British to develop, as a young man, a special affinity with many influential friends in England and to build, as president, a strong relationship with the Tory government of Harold Macmillan.”
“Sandford shows how a young and privileged American, promiscuous as he is politically precocious, befriends like-minded roguish Brits who together grow to professional adulthood and save the Cold War world from catastrophe. An amazing story discovered and entertainingly told, it gives whole new meaning to our Special Relationship with Great Britain.”
“Masterful. . . . Some books have explored JFK’s early visits to England, others have looked at his fascination with Winston Churchill, and a few have examined his commitment to the Special Relationshipbut no author has combined all these elements in such a compelling fashion.”