Volume Two, 1933-1938
By Blanche Wiesen Cook
(Viking Adult, Hardcover, 9780670844982, 686pp.)
Publication Date: June 28, 1999
List Price: $34.95*
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The second volume plunges into the White House years and the Great Depression, the time when Eleanor exerted enormous influence over the course of the country. In the thirties, Eleanor becomes even more surprising and multifaceted. A loyal wife, a devoted mother, a woman who courted romance and adventure, Eleanor Roosevelt was America's most compelling, charismatic, and visionary First Lady. She ran a virtual parallel administration that championed civil rights, affordable housing, and a New Deal for women. She took unpopular stands and often countered her husband's policies, particularly concerning racial justice, women's rights, the plight of refugees, and approaches to Fascism and the Spanish Civil War. The book doses in 1938, as Europe moves toward war.
This is an unparalleled presentation of a woman whose life was filled with passionate commitment and who struggled for personal fulfillment. It is a book for all readers of American history and politics, and as the New Deal comes under assault today, a book for readers who care about a decent future for all people.
Blanche Wiesen Cook is Distinguished Professor of History at John Jay College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York. She is senior editor of the Garland Library of War and Peace, author of Eleanor Roosevelt: Volume One: 1884-1933 (available from Viking and Penguin), Crystal Eastman on Women and Revolution and The Declassified Eisenhower, and is a former vice-president for research at the American Historical Association.