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Kennedy - a cultural history of an American icon
Mark J. White
Paperback / softback
Bloomsbury Academic
UK Publication Date

During his lifetime, John F. Kennedy created a dazzling image that has been sustained since his assassination in 1963.
This book examines how Kennedy succeeded in using his military service in World War II, his literary efforts, his sex appeal, his family and other attributes and achievements to develop such a potent image.
It also explores the roles played by Joseph and Jackie Kennedy in bolstering his appeal.
Probably no other figure in history has created such a positive impression on people throughout the world today than Kennedy.
This book seeks to explain how this happened, and to consider the extent to which the image conformed to the reality of the man.

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Mark White is Professor of History at Queen Mary, University of London

In six well-researched thematic chapters, White investigates the construction of the Kennedy public image ... [His] thesis makes for a compelling read. His illustration of the development of Kennedy's image reveals how revolutionary and innovative the Kennedy operation was in its techniques ... Ultimately, the fact that White can build such a strong thesis is testimony to the success of the Kennedy family's efforts to build such an enduring image.
U.S. Studies Online - Dafydd Townley

4/5 stars ... Fills a hitherto unacknowledged gap.
The Bookbag - Sue Magee

White unravels the dissonance between the public and the academy's perceptions of JFK. What follows is a learned and erudite post-revisionist account of JFK's enduring image.

Mark White draws on his deep knowledge of the Kennedy presidency to fill an important gap in the literature.
He shows in fascinating detail how John F. Kennedy assiduously built his image as a great leader, which has shaped popular memory of him down to the present day. This excellent book, which is both well researched and elegantly written, should be essential reading to scholars and students of modern US history, the American presidency, and political image-creation.
It will also fascinate general readers and challenge their understanding of JFK.
Iwan Morgan, Commonwealth Fund Professor of American History, University College London, UK

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