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Frances FitzGerald's landmark history of Vietnam and the Vietnam War, "A compassionate and penetrating account of the collision of two societies that remain untranslatable to one another." (New York Times Book Review) This magisterial work, based on Frances FitzGerald's many years of research and travels, takes us inside the history of Vietnam--the traditional, ancestor-worshiping villages, the conflicts between Communists and anti-Communists, Catholics and Buddhists, generals and monks, the disruption created by French colonialism, and America's ill-fated intervention--and reveals the country as seen through Vietnamese eyes. Originally published in 1972, FIRE IN THE LAKE was the first history of Vietnam written by an American, and subsequently won the Pulitzer Prize, the Bancroft Prize, and the National Book Award. With a clarity and insight unrivaled by any author before it or since, Frances FitzGerald illustrates how America utterly and tragically misinterpreted the realities of Vietnam.
"We must consider that we shall be A City Upon a Hill, the eyes of all people upon us," John Winthrop told his Pilgrim community crossing the Atlantic to found the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Four centuries later, Americans are still building Cities Upon a Hill. In Cities on a Hill Pulitzer Prize-winner Frances FitzGerald explores this often eccentric, sometimes prophetic inclination in America. With characteristic wit and insight she examines four radically different communities -- a fundamentalist church, a guru-inspired commune, a Sunbelt retirement city, and a gay activist community -- all embodying this visionary drive to shake the past and build anew. Frances FitzGerald here gives eloquent voice and definition to a quintessentially American impulse. It is a resonant work of literary imagination and journalistic precision.
VIETNAM: SPIRITS OF THE EARTH is the result of an unusual collaboration between noted author Frances Fitzgerald and photojournalist Mary Cross. Both have travelled repeatedly to Vietnam and revisited the country together in 1999, and from their extensive experience created this vivid and insightful look at Vietnam as it is today. This lush picture book of images of life in contemporary Vietnam is divided into three parts to reflect the country’s three regions - North, Central and South Vietnam. Among the areas covered are rice culture, Confucianism vs. local tradition, the cult of ancestors, the role of Buddhism, ethnic minorities, handicrafts, the impact and the legacy of French colonialism and the American presence and war, and the tensions within Vietnam society today.
Way Out There in the Blue is a major work of history by the Pulitzer Prizewinning author of Fire in the Lake. Using the Star Wars missile defense program as a magnifying glass on his presidency, Frances FitzGerald gives us a wholly original portrait of Ronald Reagan, the most puzzling president of the last half of the twentieth century.
Reagan's presidency and the man himself have always been difficult to fathom. His influence was enormous, and the few powerful ideas he espoused remain with us still -- yet he seemed nothing more than a charming, simple-minded, inattentive actor. FitzGerald shows us a Reagan far more complex than the man we thought we knew. A master of the American language and of self-presentation, the greatest storyteller ever to occupy the Oval Office, Reagan created a compelling public persona that bore little relationship to himself.
The real Ronald Reagan -- the Reagan who emerges from FitzGerald's book -- was a gifted politician with a deep understanding of the American national psyche and at the same time an executive almost totally disengaged from the policies of his administration and from the people who surrounded him.
The idea that America should have an impregnable shield against nuclear weapons was Reagan's invention. His famous Star Wars speech, in which he promised us such a shield and called upon scientists to produce it, gave rise to the Strategic Defense Initiative. Reagan used his sure understanding of American mythology, history and politics to persuade the country that a perfect defense against Soviet nuclear weapons would be possible, even though the technology did not exist and was not remotely feasible. His idea turned into a multibillion-dollar research program. SDI played a central role in U.S.-Soviet relations at a crucial juncture in the Cold War, and in a different form it survives to this day.
Drawing on prodigious research, including interviews with the participants, FitzGerald offers new insights into American foreign policy in the Reagan era. She gives us revealing portraits of major players in Reagan's administration, including George Shultz, Caspar Weinberger, Donald Regan and Paul Nitze, and she provides a radically new view of what happened at the Reagan-Gorbachev summits in Geneva, Reykjavik, Washington and Moscow.
FitzGerald describes the fierce battles among Reagan's advisers and the frightening increase of Cold War tensions during Reagan's first term. She shows how the president who presided over the greatest peacetime military buildup came to espouse the elimination of nuclear weapons, and how the man who insisted that the Soviet Union was an "evil empire" came to embrace the Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, and to proclaim an end to the Cold War long before most in Washington understood that it had ended.
Way Out There in the Blue is a ground-breaking history of the American side of the end of the Cold War. Both appalling and funny, it is a black comedy in which Reagan, playing the role he wrote for himself, is the hero.
Using the Star Wars missile defense program as a magnifying glass on his presidency, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Frances FitzGerald gives us a wholly original portrait of Ronald Reagan. Drawing on extensive research, FitzGerald shows how Reagan managed to get billions in funding for a program that was technologically impossible by exploiting the fears of the American public. The Reagan who emerges from FitzGerald's book was a gifted politician with a deep understanding of the national psyche, and an executive almost totally disengaged from the policies of his administration. Both appalling and funny, Way Out There in the Blue is the most penetrating study of Reagan's presidency to date.
Based on interviews with both Americans and Vietnamese, Winners and Losers is Gloria Emerson s powerful portrait of the Vietnam War. From soldiers on the battlefield to protesters on the home front, Emerson chronicles the war s impact on ordinary lives with characteristic insight and brilliance. Today, as we approach the fiftieth anniversary of the Gulf of Tonkin incident, much of the physical and emotional damage from that conflict the empty political rhetoric, the mounting casualties, and the troubled homecomings of shell-shocked soldiers is once again part of the American experience. Winners and Losers remains a potent reminder of the danger of blindly applied American power, and its poignant truths are the legacy of a remarkable journalist."
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