埃莉诺罗斯福在她的时间之前

America’s longest-serving first lady towered over the 20th century

认为在不同的时代,埃莉诺罗斯福可以成为美国总统。广泛喜爱,最长的第一夫人在历史的右侧,几乎每个主题,包括公民权利,接受欧洲难民以及需要最终帝国的需要。她凶狠地支持她的原因。不耐烦和慷慨激昂,她孜孜不倦地开放了她的丈夫,富兰克林·德拉诺罗斯福(FDR),也可以接受她的项目。他们的传记家Blanche Wiesen Cook解释说,他们的传记家威森队解释说,他们是“历史最强大和最强大的伙伴关系之一”。“她理解了他的需求,原谅了他的犯罪,埋葬了她的嫉妒,并开始了自己独立的职业生涯...... FDR鼓励她的独立性,当他沉默她所做的原因时,他被沉默的原因。”

The third and final volume of Ms Cook’s life of Eleanor Roosevelt is concerned mainly with the second world war years. Eleanor, like her husband, was early to see the clouds forming in Europe, and together they tried to coax the American public to prepare for involvement. It was a difficult task. Isolationism had taken hold, and when the war in Europe began, some Americans viewed it, as one union official said, as being “between two thieves”.

埃莉诺竞选经济和社会平等。如何,她质疑,美国可以促进国外的民主,同时在家里扼杀少数群体吗?随着纳粹恐怖的清晰,她在富兰克林私下工作,在公众通过她的近日报纸专栏,“我的一天”,敦促来自国外的难民被进入美国。“人们没有将美国人丢弃雇用难民,尽管可能会发现这个孤立的案件,”她在1939年写道,听起来是今天共鸣的主题。

As the war progressed, FDR sought Eleanor’s counsel less frequently; he didn’t want to be accused of running a “petticoat government”. More significantly, his ill health, especially his worsening heart problems, reduced his tolerance for argument. So as Eleanor pushed her causes — ending discrimination against black troops, for example, or promoting low-cost housing for workers in defence industries — he tried to dodge. Courting Winston Churchill, the president sought to contain Eleanor’s criticism of Churchill’s relentless imperialism. To her daughter Anna, Eleanor described Churchill as “lovable and emotional and very human, but I don’t want him to write the peace…”

Through decades of exhaustive research, Ms Cook, a history professor at John Jay College in New York, has emerged as the voice of authority on Eleanor Roosevelt. Yet in isolation, this final volume offers only occasional glimpses into the complex bond between the first couple. Both signed their letters with endearments like “much love” and depended on each other for counsel, yet romance seemed long gone. “There is no fundamental love to draw on, just respect and affection,” Eleanor wrote in one letter to a friend. Forthright about her loneliness, she turned to other deep friendships for sustenance.

In “Eleanor and Hick” Susan Quinn focuses on the first lady’s relationship with Lorena Hickok (known as Hick), a journalist with the Associated Press. Assigned to cover the first lady, Hick fell in love instead, and Eleanor seems to have reciprocated. They shared difficult childhoods. Eleanor’s emotionally distant mother had called her “Granny” as a child because she was so serious; Hick had been beaten by her father and the family moved constantly to try to escape poverty. Both craved love. Eleanor had been forced to turn outside her marriage in 1918 after uncovering an affair between her husband and her secretary.

Hard-charging yet fragile, Hick drew out the emotionally reserved Roosevelt. Together they worked to help those needing jobs and food as the Great Depression tightened its grip. Their letters, covered extensively as well in the earlier volumes of Ms Cook’s biography, are extraordinarily expressive: “Oh! How I wanted to put my arms around you in reality instead of in spirit,” Eleanor wrote to Hick in 1933, not long after FDR took office. “I went and kissed your photograph instead and the tears were in my eyes.” Hick’s letters contained equal passion. Once, after a long time apart, she wrote, “I remember your eyes, with a kind of teasing smile in them, and the feeling of that soft spot just north-east of the corner of your mouth against my lips.”

Ms Cook’s book essentially ends with FDR’s death in April 1945, with just 30 pages of “epilogue” devoted to the final 17 years of Eleanor’s life — years in which she became unshackled, so to speak, from her role as a politician’s wife. During that time, despite the low expectations of male delegates at the founding of the United Nations (UN), she was the driving force behind the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a UN document that endures to this day. Across 30 articles, it lays out fundamental principles, including that every human being deserves freedom and must not be tortured or arbitrarily arrested.

埃莉诺越来越忙碌的生活意味着她的时间有限。所以HICK在MS COOK的最终体积中只会简要出现,尽管在大部分战争期间生活在白宫。很难理解这种关系的全部范围;HICK从他们的参与最激烈的时期烧毁了一些字母,并且如MS COOK喜欢说,“我不知道两个人在一起时做了什么。”什么是清楚的是,一个永远找不到终身爱好关系的女性埃恩诺尔罗斯福,而是将她的爱与最接近她最近的人分享 - 以及大量的世界 - 随着她不断地努力使它变得更好。

埃莉诺罗斯福:战争年和之后,1939-1962。由Blanche Wiesen Cook。维京;670页;40美元。

埃莉诺和赫克:爱情塑造第一夫人。由苏珊奎因。企鹅;404页;30美元。

This article first appeared in the Books and arts section of经济学家2016年10月29日

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