The Scarlet Thread of Scandal: Morality and the American Presidency

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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2001 - History - 224 pages
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Never before have Americans been more concerned about the moral dimensions of presidential leadership. What role should morality play in the decision making of our most powerful elected official? What did the Founders think about the significance of morality in this cherished political institution? Does the private behavior of a president influence his or her ability to lead our nation? In The Scarlet Thread of Scandal, eminent scholar Charles W. Dunn turns a penetrating eye to the history of presidential scandals to answer these and other pressing questions. Scandals are surely nothing new in the White House_ever since the creation of the republic, presidents have made morally questionable judgments, whether constitutional, ethical, legal, or personal. In eloquent and judicious prose, Dunn chronicles the numerous controversies in presidential history, paying particular attention to their impact on the American people and public memory. The Scarlet Thread of Scandal will make all Americans think differently about past, present, and future presidents.
 

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The scarlet thread of scandal: morality and the American presidency

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On the surface, these two books would seem to have something in common--they both talk about the "M" word (Monica, that is) and President Clinton. However, they do so in two very different ways. In ... Read full review

Contents

THE SCARLET THREAD OF SCANDAL
1
THE MORAL KALEIDOSCOPE
17
ORIGINS OF MORAL CONFLICT IN THE MODERN ERA
41
PRESIDENTIAL SCANDAL IN A GOLDEN AGE 19321960
79
TARNISHING THE GOLDEN AGE 19611975
113
POSTMODERN PRESIDENTIAL MORALITY
137
THE SEAMLESS GARMENT OF MORALITY
165
NOTES
187
INDEX
203
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
209
Copyright

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About the author (2001)

Charles W. Dunn is the author of numerous books on American politics and history. He is dean of the School of Arts and Letters at Grove City College and lives in Grove City, Pennsylvania.

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