In His Own Right

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2002-06-01
  • Publisher: Columbia Univ Pr

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Robert Kennedy's role in American politics during the 1960s was pivotal yet has defied attempts to define it. He was a junior senator from New York, but he was also much more. The public perceived him as possessing the intangible qualities of his brother, the slain president. From 1965 to 1968 Kennedy struggled to find his own voice in national affairs.In His Own Rightexamines this crucial period of Robert Kennedy's political career, combining the best of political biography with a gripping social history of the social movements of the 1960s. How did Kennedy make the transformation from cold warrior to grassroots activist, from being a political operator known for ruthlessness toward his opponents to becoming, by 1968, a "tribune of the underclass"? Based on never before seen documents, this intimate portrait of one of the most respected politicians never elected president describes Robert Kennedy's relationship with such well-known activists and political players as Benjamin Spock, Eugene McCarthy, Allard Lowenstein, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Cesar Chavez, as well as the ordinary men and women who influenced Kennedy's views as he came to stand in the public arena and in the national consciousness as a man and a leader in his own right.

Author Biography

Joseph A. Palermo has written for Peace and Change and other journals. He teaches at Cornell University and Colgate College

Table of Contents

Preface ix
Acknowledgments xiii
Prologue: The Odyssey Begins 1(7)
On His Own: Kennedy's Evolving Critique of the War, May 1965-February 1966
A Slow Path to Peace: Kennedy Calls for a Negotiated Settlement, March 1966-March 1967
At the Center of the Storm: Kennedy and the Shifting Political Winds of 1967
``The Hottest Place in Hell'': Kennedy, the Democrats, and the McCarthy Candidacy
The Collapse of the Myths: Kennedy, Johnson, and the Tet Offensive, January-February 1968
The Breaking Point: Kennedy Responds to Tet, February 8, 1968
Fifteen Days in March: Kennedy Challenges Johnson, March 1968
Civil Rights and the Urban Rebellions: Kennedy, King, and the Politics of Race, 1965-1968
Building a Coalition: Kennedy and the Primaries, March 16-May 28, 1968
California: Kennedy's Last Campaign, May 1-June 6, 1968
Conclusion: A Potential Unrealized 250(9)
Notes 259(64)
Bibliography 323(14)
Index 337

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