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Franklin Foer's Top Book Recommendations

Want to know what books Franklin Foer recommends on their reading list? We've researched interviews, social media posts, podcasts, and articles to build a comprehensive list of Franklin Foer's favorite book recommendations of all time.

Washington is big business. John B. Judis, a senior editor for the New Republic, onducts an instructive tour through this corridor of money and power in this work. Cutting to the heart of today's debate, it recommends what we can do to fix our broken system. less
Recommended by Franklin Foer, and 1 others.

Franklin FoerJudis makes the case that elites lost the ethos of disinterestedness, one of the great ideals of the progressive era. It connects back to pragmatism, which advocated disinterested policy makers making decisions based on a calculus about the public good. This progressive ideal of disinterestedness became enshrined in the way that elites thought. If you look at the Federal Reserve, or the Brookings... (Source)

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The Age of Reform

This book is a landmark in American political thought. It examines the passion for progress and reform that colored the entire period from 1890 to 1940 -- with startling and stimulating results. it searches out the moral and emotional motives of the reformers the myths and dreams in which they believed, and the realities with which they had to compromise.

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize.
Recommended by Franklin Foer, and 1 others.

Franklin FoerHofstadter is the quintessential Cold War liberal. He clearly doesn’t have a special place in his heart for the early era of American liberalism. Hofstadter’s goal in this book is to dissociate progressives from New Deal liberals. He famously portrays progressives as members of a status-anxious middle class, whose anxieties shaped and limited their moralistic policies. He’s not a big fan of... (Source)

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The Promise Of American Life

This collection chronicles the fiction and non fiction classics by the greatest writers the world has ever known. The inclusion of both popular as well as overlooked pieces is pivotal to providing a broad and representative collection of classic works. less
Recommended by Franklin Foer, Robert Reich, and 2 others.

Franklin FoerThe book provided the clearest distillation of American liberalism to date: “The use of Hamiltonian means to achieve Jeffersonian ends.” From the foundation of this country, there was a great debate between Hamiltonians, who had a vision of a strong state, and Jeffersonians, who advocated a yeoman’s republic with limited government. The genius of that aphorism is that it synthesises what liberals... (Source)

Robert ReichIt was written in 1909 and it had an electrifying effect on America and in the formation of modern American capitalism. Teddy Roosevelt used the book in formulating his so-called “New Nationalism” which he presented to the country shortly thereafter. Barack Obama used the occasion marking Teddy Roosevelt’s speech in Kansas in 1911 on New Nationalism – I believe it was the 100th anniversary of the... (Source)

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Winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for History

A riveting, original book about the creation of modern American thought.

The Metaphysical Club was an informal group that met in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1872, to talk about ideas. Its members included Oliver Well Holmes, Jr., future associate justice of the United States Supreme Court; William James, the father of modern American psychology; and Charles Sanders Peirce, logician, scientist, and the founder of semiotics. The Club was probably in existence for about nine months. No records were kept. The...
Recommended by Franklin Foer, and 1 others.

Franklin FoerIt’s a beautifully crafted group biography about the birth of the first American school of philosophy – pragmatism. Pragmatism is an idea about ideas. The gist is to assess theories based on their efficacy. Menand describes ideas as being like microchips or screwdrivers, tools that help us achieve results. That concept sprung from this generation. So, the four figures it tells this birth story... (Source)

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Originally published in 1916. Author: Woodrow Wilson Language: English Keywords: Social Sciences / Politics Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. Obscure Press are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork. less
Recommended by Franklin Foer, and 1 others.

Franklin FoerToday people like to call Barack Obama and Bill Clinton intellectual presidents. They aren’t, in comparison to the likes of Woodrow Wilson. He was a genius. He wrote this book, The State, as a young academic. It’s from a neglected and relatively radical period of his career. In the next decade, he took a much more conservative turn as president of Princeton. The book outlines a much more robust... (Source)

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