The Quandary for Biographers: Get Up Close, but How Personal?
When Doris Kearns Goodwin was still young and unknown and writing her biography of former President Lyndon B. Johnson, she stayed at his Texas ranch. Sometimes, she said in the book’s prologue, when he could not sleep, he would settle into her bed and confess his troubles while she sat nearby.
Walter Isaacson was at Steve Jobs’s bedside as Mr. Jobs was dying of cancer, an experience, Mr. Isaacson has acknowledged, that made him “deeply emotionally wrapped up” with his subject.
Contemporary biography has always been a tricky balancing act, even before Paula Broadwell demonstrated with her book about David H. Petraeus how the scales can tip decisively the wrong way....
comments powered by Disqus
- Kissinger Memo from 1972: Make the North Vietnamese think Nixon and I are crazy
- How Much U.S. History Do Americans Actually Know? Less Than You Think.
- Ice cream cone named after Adolf Hitler on sale in India sparks anger in Germany
- Expressing Outrage over Attacks on Cultural Heritage of Iraq, General Assembly Unanimously Adopts Resolution Calling for Urgent Action
- Isis Palmyra demolition has begun with ancient God Lion statue destroyed
- Robert S. Wistrich, Scholar of Anti-Semitism, Dies at 70
- NYT hosts debate including Eric Foner: How Americans should remember Reconstruction
- William Leuchtenburg says historians and the media have been too hard on Obama
- Hugh Ambrose, historian who helped develop WWII Museum, dead at 48
- Historian discounts claim that Churchill and other British PM's were gay