In keeping with the preceding book on the American Founders, this volume deals mostly with U.S. Presidents and their ideas in the 19th and 20th centuries, from Lincoln (along with his contemporaries Davis and Stevens), Theodore Roosevelt, and Wilson, to Franklin Roosevent, Lyndon Johnson, and Reagan. Part One centers on Civil War and Reconstruction; Part Two on Progressivism and New Deal;' and Part Three on Toward Contemporary America. In all three, the overriding concern will be with Legislative Perspectives of Sovereignty and State.
In the mid-19th century, the main central imprints of Abraham Lincoln upon the Union, of Jefferson Davis upon the Confederacy, and of Thaddeus Stevens upon Reconstruction were manifested in ways crucial to this study. Throughout the 20th century, there was a long succession of Presidents whose chief slogans signaled the country's main agenda during their Administrations. Most prominent were Theodore Roosevelt's Square Deal, and New Nationalism, Woodrow Wilson's New Freedom, Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, John Kennedy's New Frontier, Lyndon Johnson's Great Society, and Ronald Reagan's Revolution in government. In these cases, Presidential viewpoints on legislative sovereignty and the legislative state had great impact upon the nation as well as on Congress, notwithstanding the separation of powers. Certain contemporary points of view also loom large. Some emerging hopeful trends toward an American neo-Progressivism are considered, taking their lead from historical frameworks explored in the main body of the book.
About the Author:
A. London Fell has taught at New York and Fordham Universities. He is semi-retired.