The Literary Churchill Author, Reader, Actor

by Jonathan Rose

The Literary Churchill Author, Reader, Actor Synopsis

This strikingly original book introduces a Winston Churchill we have not known before. Award-winning author Jonathan Rose explores in tandem Churchill's careers as statesman and author, revealing the profound influence of literature and theatre on Churchill's personal, carefully composed grand story and on the decisions he made throughout his political life. Rose provides in this expansive literary biography an analysis of Churchill's writings and their reception (he won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1953 and was a best-selling author), and a chronicle of his dealings with publishers, editors, literary agents, and censors. The book also identifies an array of authors who shaped Churchill's own writings and politics: George Bernard Shaw, H. G. Wells, Margaret Mitchell, George Orwell, Oscar Wilde, and many more. Rose investigates the effect of Churchill's passion for theatre on his approach to reportage, memoirs and historical works. Perhaps most remarkably, Rose reveals the unmistakable influence of Churchill's reading on every important episode of his public life, including his championship of social reform, plans for the Gallipoli invasion, command during the Blitz, crusade for Zionism, and efforts to prevent a nuclear arms race. In a fascinating conclusion, Rose traces the significance of Churchill's writings to later generations of politicians, among them President John F. Kennedy as he struggled to extricate the U.S. from the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The Good Book Guide Review

Born into an aristocratic English family, Winston Churchill made his name as a politician in the early 1900s, but his many talents and rich life experience offered alternative careers as a soldier, artist, historian and writer. This exciting and original portrait by awardwinning biographer Jonathan Rose investigates Churchill’s life and career as influenced by his love and understanding of literature. He explores how this inventive thinker was driven by his wide reading and his love of the theatrical, using a literary model of politics to become the peerless statesman who made an indelible mark on British History, a Nobel Prize winning Prime Minister whose leadership during the Second World War helped to secure freedom for a nation. Painstakingly researched and immensely readable, this in-depth study offers a new perspective on a complex personality and national hero, drawing a picture of a man whose sense of the dramatic changed the course of history.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780300212341
Publication date: 01/05/2015
Publisher: Yale University Press
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780300212341
Publication date: 1st May 2015
Author: Jonathan Rose
Publisher: Yale University Press
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 528 pages
Categories: Biography: literary, Literary studies: from c 1900 -, Biography: historical, political & military,

About Jonathan Rose

Jonathan Rose is William R. Kenan Jr Professor of History at Drew University. His 2001 book for Yale, The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes, was winner of many prizes including the Jacques Barzun Prize in Cultural History and was named a Book of the Year by The Economist magazine.

More About Jonathan Rose

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