Franklin

"An empire of ideals" : the chimeric imagination of Ronald Reagan / Justin D. Garrison.

Author/Creator:
Garrison, Justin D.
Publication:
New York : Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2013.
Format/Description:
Book
xii, 238 pages ; 24 cm.
Series:
Routledge research in American politics and governance ; 5
Status/Location:
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Subjects:
Reagan, Ronald -- Language.
Reagan, Ronald -- Rhetoric.
Rhetoric -- Political aspects -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Communication in politics -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
National characteristics, American -- Political aspects -- History -- 20th century.
Optimism -- Political aspects -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
United States -- Politics and government -- 1981-1989.
Summary:
"Justin D. Garrison provides an original and groundbreaking analysis of Ronald Reagan's imagination as it was expressed mainly in his presidential speeches. He argues that the predominant strain of Reagan's imagination is "chimeric," that is, imbued with a high degree of optimism, romantic dreaminess, naivete, and illusion. Reagan spoke often about religion, democracy, freedom, conservatism, progress, America's role in the world, the American people, the American Founding, and peace. These are for him important symbols, which together express his general vision of politics and human existence. These symbols have to be analyzed in depth in order to understand who Reagan really was and what he represented to his admirers. The book concludes that Reagan's vision contains many dubious elements that present dangers for practical politics and claims that the popularity of Reagan's imagination among Americans suggests a problematic self-understanding. Surpassing, existing works on Reagan's ideas and speeches, this book systematically explains the general quality and major components of Reagan's vision, and it draws upon political theory, aesthetics, and American political thought to analyze his imagination"-- Provided by publisher.
""An Empire of Ideals" provides an original and groundbreaking analysis of Ronald Reagan's imagination as it was expressed mainly in his presidential speeches. The book argues that the predominant strain of Reagan's imagination is "chimeric," that is, imbued with a high degree of optimism, romantic dreaminess, naivet,̌ and illusion. Justin D. Garrison challenges a number of existing assumptions about Reagan. Among other things, it draws into question Reagan's self-proclaimed status as a conservative and as a faithful adherent to the ideas of the American Founding. The book concludes that Reagan's vision contains many dubious elements that present dangers for practical politics. It also claims that the popularity of Reagan's imagination among Americans suggests a problematic self-understanding. Surpassing existing works on Reagan's ideas and speeches, the book systematically explains the general quality and major components of Reagan's vision, and it draws upon political theory, aesthetics, and American political thought to analyze his imagination. Although the book is a rigorous work of scholarship, it is not a highly "technical" study accessible only to academic specialists. It will be of deep interest to general readers as well as scholars. "-- Provided by publisher.
Notes:
Includes bibliographical references (pages 229-234) and index.
ISBN:
9780415818483 (hardback)
0415818486 (hardback)
9780203581230 (ebk)
OCLC:
812255760