An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Two Presidents, Two Parties, and the Battle for the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by Todd S. Purdum

  • Published: Aug 29, 2020

A top Washington journalist recounts the dramatic political battle to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the law that created modern America, on the fiftieth anniversary of its passage It was a turbulent time in Americaa time of sit-ins, freedom rides, a... read more

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Details of An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Exact title of the book
An Idea Whose Time Has Come
Book author
Todd S. Purdum
ISBN
9780805096736
Publisher
Henry Holt and Co.
Published
Apr 01, 2014
Language
English
Format
PDF, FB2, EPUB, MOBI
Pages
416
File size (in PDF)
3744 kB

Some brief overview of book

A top Washington journalist recounts the dramatic political battle to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the law that created modern America, on the fiftieth anniversary of its passage It was a turbulent time in Americaa time of sit-ins, freedom rides, a March on Washington and a governor standing in the schoolhouse doorwhen John F. Kennedy sent Congress a bill to bar racial discrimination in employment, education, and public accommodations. Countless civil rights measures had died on Capitol Hill in the past.

But this one was different because, as one influential senator put it, it was "an idea whose time has come." In a powerful narrative layered with revealing detail, Todd S. Purdum tells the story of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, recreating the legislative maneuvering and the larger-than-life characters who made its passage possible. From the Kennedy brothers to Lyndon Johnson, from Martin Luther King Jr. to Hubert Humphrey and Everett Dirksen, Purdum shows how these all-too-human figures managed, in just over a year, to create a bill that prompted the longest filibuster in the history of the U.

S. Senate yet was ultimately adopted with overwhelming bipartisan support. He evokes the high purpose and low dealings that marked the creation of this monumental law, drawing on extensive archival research and dozens of new interviews that bring to life this signal achievement in American history.

Often hailed as the most important law of the past century, the Civil Rights Act stands as a lesson for our own troubled times about what is possible when patience, bipartisanship, and decency rule the day.

About author

S. Purdum is the author of An Idea Whose Time Has Come, A Time of Our Choosing, and Something wonderful. He is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and a senior writer at Politico, having previously worked at The New York Times for more than twenty years, where he served as White House correspondent, diplomatic correspondent, and Los Angeles bureau chief.

A graduate of Princeton University, he lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Dee Dee Myers, and their two children, Kate and Stephen.

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