Leadership: In Turbulent Times

Leadership: In Turbulent Times

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER“After five decades of magisterial output, Doris Kearns Goodwin leads the league of presidential historians. Insight is her imprint.”—USA TODAY“A book like Leadership should help us raise our expectations of our national leaders, our country and ourselves.”—The Washington Post“We can only hope that a few of Goodwin’s many readers will find in her s...

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Title:Leadership: In Turbulent Times
Author:Doris Kearns Goodwin
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Leadership: In Turbulent Times Reviews

  • Faith

    This book has mini biographies of four presidents selected by the author as exemplars of leadership abilities: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson. There is a chapter for each, under each of three themes: ambition and early recognition of leadership ability; adversity and growth; and how they led during crises in their presidencies. There is also an epilogue that describes the ends of their lives. Aside from Lincoln, I hadn't really thought about that, and

    This book has mini biographies of four presidents selected by the author as exemplars of leadership abilities: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson. There is a chapter for each, under each of three themes: ambition and early recognition of leadership ability; adversity and growth; and how they led during crises in their presidencies. There is also an epilogue that describes the ends of their lives. Aside from Lincoln, I hadn't really thought about that, and it was interesting to learn that each man died relatively young, Lincoln in his 50s and the others in their 60s. Of course I learned a lot more than that from this book, and one of the best things about it was that it made me want to learn even more about each of these men.

    I liked reading about the early experiences that shaped these men, but the most interesting chapters to me were the ones describing how each president faced a particular crisis during his presidency. Lincoln struggled with when to issue the Emancipation Proclamation. Theodore Roosevelt faced a coal strike threatening the country. In 100 days during the Great Depression, Franklin Roosevelt had to lead the country through bank failures and create the New Deal programs. Johnson had a brief window after Kennedy was assassinated in which he could convince Congress to enact the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Since the author was also Johnson's biographer, this chapter of the book felt fuller and more immediate. It included other Johnson accomplishments like the voting rights act, Medicare, tax cuts, federal aid to education, Head Start, the Fair Housing Act of 1968 and the expansion of immigration to admit people other than Europeans. She also described his great failure, the Vietnam War, during which he made terrible decisions and lied to the public. It was nice to read about presidents who actually believed that the government could and should help people and that leaders could and should bring people together.

  • Donna Wetzel

    Thank you Goodreads and Doris Kearns Goodwin for my free copy of Leadership: In Turbulent Times. This is an excellent book which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. Ms. Goodwin has the ability to take complicated subject matter and transform it into easy to read and understand text. She is a storyteller like Abe Lincoln and Lyndon Johnson, who are two of the past presidents discussed in this book. She gives many examples to support her viewpoints as to why these men had such great leadership qualities

    Thank you Goodreads and Doris Kearns Goodwin for my free copy of Leadership: In Turbulent Times. This is an excellent book which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. Ms. Goodwin has the ability to take complicated subject matter and transform it into easy to read and understand text. She is a storyteller like Abe Lincoln and Lyndon Johnson, who are two of the past presidents discussed in this book. She gives many examples to support her viewpoints as to why these men had such great leadership qualities. On a personal note, not one of the qualities that were mentioned in the book, appear to be qualities President Trump possesses, but that is my personal opinion. Our current President is not mentioned in the book, yet the sharp contrasts to the current administration cannot be ignored.

  • Jean

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I also learned a few things about presidents, I have read many of their biographies. I am a big fan of Goodwin. She states she started working on this book in 2013 and it took her five years to research and write. I felt that the release of the book at this current time in our presidential affairs was quite pertinent.

    Goodwin wrote biographies over the years of each of the presidents. She chose for this book: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Delano

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I also learned a few things about presidents, I have read many of their biographies. I am a big fan of Goodwin. She states she started working on this book in 2013 and it took her five years to research and write. I felt that the release of the book at this current time in our presidential affairs was quite pertinent.

    Goodwin wrote biographies over the years of each of the presidents. She chose for this book: Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Lindon Baines Johnson. The book is divided into three thematic areas: ambition and recognition of leadership; adversity and growth; and how they led. In the final section Goodwin examines different types of leadership: transformational, crisis management, turnaround and visionary.

    The book is well written and researched. I found it interesting that each president struggled with his own variety of emotional problems. Goodwin reveals how each president had different leadership abilities. I found the three case studies in part three most interesting. Goodwin has presented two republican presidents and two democrat presidents. The book is unbiased. The book is well organized and easy to read. Goodwin is a master storyteller; that skill brings history to life. I highly recommend this book.

    I read this as an audiobook downloaded from Audible. The book is just over eighteen hours. The narration was excellent. Goodwin narrated the introduction and epilog. Beau Bridges, David Morse, Jay O. Sanders and Richard Thomas each narrated a president. It was great having different narrators as it allowed distinction between each president.

  • Joseph Sciuto

    What a wonderful, wonderful book by the brilliant Doris Kearns Goodwin. Over the last couple of decades and especially now, I have asked myself, "Where have you gone George Washington, Abe Lincoln, T.R., Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Harry Truman and in a sense "Leadership in Turbulent Times" by Mrs. Goodwin has answered that question. They having gone anywhere, but apparently the leadership in our country has refused to study and emulate these men; whereas the four Presidents in this book, Lin

    What a wonderful, wonderful book by the brilliant Doris Kearns Goodwin. Over the last couple of decades and especially now, I have asked myself, "Where have you gone George Washington, Abe Lincoln, T.R., Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Harry Truman and in a sense "Leadership in Turbulent Times" by Mrs. Goodwin has answered that question. They having gone anywhere, but apparently the leadership in our country has refused to study and emulate these men; whereas the four Presidents in this book, Lincoln, T.R., Franklin Roosevelt and Johnson, understood the importance of history and the history of our country and what the Founders envisioned and most importantly what America stands for.

    All four Presidents had many things in common, but a few things that really stand out is that all of them put country above themselves and formed an intimacy with all the American people, despite class, race, or religion. When Franklin Roosevelt died a reporter noted, "One man has died and 130 million people feel alone."

    Before reading this book I had read a lot about Presidents Lincoln and T.R, some about President Franklin Roosevelt but virtually nothing about President Johnson. The Viet Nam War has so defined his Presidency that it is only after reading this book that I have come away with an appreciation for his legislative accomplishments, which until this day, have not been equaled by any U. S. Administration ... From Civil Rights and Health Care ... To Voting Rights and Equal Housing. The "Great Society" literally transformed the American Landscape.

    Despite whatever previous knowledge I had about the other 3 Presidents, I nevertheless learned a lot more about each, and especially how they approached the most pressing issues and tragedies of all time. "Whatever can be done today, cannot wait until tomorrow."

    I highly recommend this book. Thank you Mrs. Goodwin.

  • Lorna

    is a powerful look at the qualities of leadership exhibited, each in their own way, and as determined by history and the unique crises and challenges faced by four transformational presidents - Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson. Beloved historian Doris Kearns Goodwin separates her book into three sections:

    and

    Kearns Go

    is a powerful look at the qualities of leadership exhibited, each in their own way, and as determined by history and the unique crises and challenges faced by four transformational presidents - Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson. Beloved historian Doris Kearns Goodwin separates her book into three sections:

    and

    Kearns Goodwin explores the transformational leadership of Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War and the implementation of the Emancipation Proclamation; the crisis leadership of Theodore Roosevelt in the wake of the industrial revolution dealing with economic and social issues at the beginning of the twentieth century; the turnaround leadership of Franklin Roosevelt as he assumed office in the wake of the depression and collapse of the economy focusing on the corrective measures that were implemented in the first hundred days; and the visionary leadership of Lyndon Johnson as he came to the presidency following the assassination of John Kennedy and vowing to establish sweeping civil rights legislation as part of his Great Society. In these turbulent and unsettling times, it is comforting to know that this country has not only survived adversity in the past, but has found ways to improve this nation.

  • Jenna (Bookiemoji)

    Brilliant. I learned something about each president in their respective chapters. But became a bit muddled and long-winded when the author spoke by topic in the later half of the book and jumped between each president, sometimes mid-thought. Regardless, this is a very important book that I see doing well upon release. It’s a sad read, too, as it inadvertently highlights those things that are lacking in our current “leadership”.

  • Bryan Craig

    What makes a great leader? Are they born or bred? These are some of the questions Goodwin asks the reader. I really liked how Goodwin organized the material in her study of four great presidents: Lincoln, TR, FDR, and LBJ. She unpacks important traits of their childhood, how they recovered from their lowest points, and how they succeeded at their biggest moments as presidents.

    Other scholars remind us that presidential greatness is hard to find, and after reading this, this fact still holds true,

    What makes a great leader? Are they born or bred? These are some of the questions Goodwin asks the reader. I really liked how Goodwin organized the material in her study of four great presidents: Lincoln, TR, FDR, and LBJ. She unpacks important traits of their childhood, how they recovered from their lowest points, and how they succeeded at their biggest moments as presidents.

    Other scholars remind us that presidential greatness is hard to find, and after reading this, this fact still holds true, but Goodwin's easy writing style and important messages can inspire any one of us to be better at what we do.

    These four presidents all thought about something bigger for the country, held a strong vision of where they wanted to take the country, and asked the people to help. It seems many top-level politicians don't think in these terms, or if they do, they don't have humility or empathy.

    One critique is that Goodwin didn't examined the failed moments these presidents had in office with one exception: LBJ and Vietnam. I think we can learn about leadership from the failures as well as the successes.

  • Bruce Katz

    3.75 (yes, I know it’s silly, but it feels right). Goodwin is to my mind a national treasure. Her earlier books hold pride of place on my shelves. This new book, however, simply didn’t move me as much. I’m not sure when she decided to write it — I understand that years of research typically go into her books — but one can’t read Leadership without being reminded again and again of the many shortcomings of our current political leaders. Indeed, it might be that the deeply worrisome nature of our

    3.75 (yes, I know it’s silly, but it feels right). Goodwin is to my mind a national treasure. Her earlier books hold pride of place on my shelves. This new book, however, simply didn’t move me as much. I’m not sure when she decided to write it — I understand that years of research typically go into her books — but one can’t read Leadership without being reminded again and again of the many shortcomings of our current political leaders. Indeed, it might be that the deeply worrisome nature of our times led her to engage in a different kind of project than she otherwise would have undertaken. In this book she looks at the four presidents with whom she is more familiar — Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, and LBJ — in an effort to distill what leadership qualities enabled them to accomplish as much as they did in such difficult circumstances. I found her conclusions somewhat less than convincing, perhaps because the exercise by its very nature allows the researcher to choose whatever traits and circumstances he/she likes to highlight, excluding everything else. I found myself being reminded of the many ‘secrets of successful leaders’ books I edited when I was in publishing. That said, there is much of interest in Leadership. It’s worth reading because her subjects are worthy of study, most of the points she makes seem valid (if not replicable), and because just about anything such an astute and gifted a researcher as Goodwin writes deserves serious attention. I’ll be interested to learn what others think of the book.

  • TL

    I received this via Goodreads Giveaways in exchange for an honest review. All my opinions are my own.

    ---

    Short review since head is still on the mend (better than yesterday at least)

    The author is the history teacher I would have loved to have in high-school(aside from one in my school, the others weren't good at keeping me interested). She brings history alive and is good at keeping the reader engaged in the subjects she writes about.

    This one wasn't as good at

    but was still an int

    I received this via Goodreads Giveaways in exchange for an honest review. All my opinions are my own.

    ---

    Short review since head is still on the mend (better than yesterday at least)

    The author is the history teacher I would have loved to have in high-school(aside from one in my school, the others weren't good at keeping me interested). She brings history alive and is good at keeping the reader engaged in the subjects she writes about.

    This one wasn't as good at

    but was still an interesting read. It didn't feel as put together as it could have been though. If time travel were possible one day, I would love to go back and meet most of these men and just talk to them, observe them.. that would be amazing.

    More than once I found myself thinking "Were these men fated/born into their times because their souls would be needed and they were the only ones who could to what they did? Or did the times make them into the person the country needed? Or both?"

    Did that make sense? Haha, the author puts forth the same question better than me but it does make you wonder hmm?

    Looking at the title, I'm probably not the only guessing or wondering at the reason(s) she wrote it but one can only guess *shrugs*

    This one would be good as an introduction to new readers of her work. I only have one other of her books to judge by so far, so I can't say if longtime readers would enjoy this one or not.

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