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Download The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism Audiobook, by Doris Kearns Goodwin Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Doris Kearns Goodwin Narrator: Edward Herrmann Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2013 ISBN: 9781442353183
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The gap between rich and poor has never been wider! Legislative stalemate paralyzes the country! Corporations resist federal regulations! Spectacular mergers produce giant companies! The influence of money in politics deepens! Bombs explode in crowded streets! Small wars proliferate far from our shores! A dizzying array of inventions speeds the pace of daily life!

These unnervingly familiar headlines serve as the backdrop for Doris Kearns Goodwin’s highly anticipated The Bully Pulpit—a dynamic history of the first decade of the Progressive era, that tumultuous time when the nation was coming apart at the seams and reform was in the air.

The story is told through the intense friendship of Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft—a close relationship that strengthens both men before it ruptures in 1912, when they engage in a brutal fight for the presidential nomination that divides their wives, their children, and their closest friends, while crippling the progressive wing of the Republican Party, causing Democrat Woodrow Wilson to be elected and changing the country’s history.

The Bully Pulpit is also the story of the muckraking press, which arouses the spirit of reform that helps Roosevelt push the government to shed its laissez-faire attitude toward robber barons, corrupt politicians, and corporate exploiters of our natural resources. The muckrakers are portrayed through the greatest group of journalists ever assembled at one magazine—Ida Tarbell, Ray Stannard Baker, Lincoln Steffens, and William Allen White—teamed under the mercurial genius of publisher S. S. McClure.

Goodwin’s narrative is founded upon a wealth of primary materials. The correspondence of more than four hundred letters between Roosevelt and Taft begins in their early thirties and ends only months before Roosevelt’s death. Edith Roosevelt and Nellie Taft kept diaries. The muckrakers wrote hundreds of letters to one another, kept journals, and wrote their memoirs. The letters of Captain Archie Butt, who served as a personal aide to both Roosevelt and Taft, provide an intimate view of both men.

The Bully Pulpit, like Goodwin’s brilliant chronicles of the Civil War and World War II, exquisitely demonstrates her distinctive ability to combine scholarly rigor with accessibility. It is a major work of history—an examination of leadership in a rare moment of activism and reform that brought the country closer to its founding ideals.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Doris Kearns Goodwin tells this tale with her usual literary skill and deep research… Goodwin not only sheds light on the birth of the modern political world but chronicles a remarkable friendship between two remarkable men.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “It’s a big book that cries out for a weekend in a cabin, a book to get fully lost in, to hole up with and ignore the modern world, to experience the days when newsmen and women were our heroes.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • “Goodwin directs her characters with precision and affection, and the story comes together like a well-wrought novel.”

    New York Times

  • “In her beautiful new account of the lives of Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft, historian Doris Kearns Goodwin spins a tale so gripping that one questions the need for fiction when real life is so plump with drama and intrigue.”

    Associated Press

  • “Goodwin’s evocative examination of the Progressive world is smart and engaging…She presents a highly readable and detailed portrait of an era. The Bully Pulpit brings the early twentieth century to life and firmly establishes the crucial importance of the press to Progressive politics.”

    Washington Post

  • “Here is where Goodwin’s account soars. She captures with masterly precision the depth of the Roosevelt-Taft relationship, the slow dissolution and the growing disillusion, the awkward attempts at rapprochement, and then the final break....It is a story worth telling, and one well told.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Goodwin spent eight years working on The Bully Pulpit and the effort shows, much to the reader’s benefit and delight. She keeps the story clipping along, chooses enlightening anecdotes…and has the narrative and historical acumen to weave her theme through nine hundred pages…It is a command performance of popular history.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “Few audio productions this year are likely to match, or deserve as much praise as, this history of the Progressive Era…Doris Kearns Goodwin is one of our most popular and esteemed historians, and…Edward Herrmann is simply her most simpatico reader. As in his reading of No Ordinary Time, his steady, unflagging delivery is perfectly attuned to her narrative voice and, without mimicry, to the broad array of voices, personalities, and events that highlight this rich personal and social drama. Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award.”


  • “By shining a light on a little-discussed president and a much-discussed one, Goodwin manages to make history very much alive and relevant. Better yet—the party politics are explicitly modern.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “A notable, psychologically charged study in leadership.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “Trust Goodwin to work her bestselling, Pulitzer-worthy magic here.”

    Library Journal

  • Winner of the 2015 Audie Award for Best History/Biography Narration
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • One of the New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books of 2013
  • A Los Angeles Times Bestseller
  • A Publishers Weekly Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • One of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2013 in Nonfiction
  • A 2013 Washington Post Notable Book for Nonfiction
  • A 2013 Booklist Editors’ Choice for Adult Books
  • A Wall Street Journal Bestseller
  • A 2013 Economist Best Book for Politics and Current Affairs
  • A USA Today Best Book of 2013
  • A Time Magazine Best Book of 2013
  • Finalist for the 2013 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for History
  • An Amazon Top 100 Book of 2013
  • A 2014 Carnegie Medal for Literature Finalist for Ficiton
  • A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of 2013
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award
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About the Author
Author Doris Kearns Goodwin

Doris Kearns Goodwin won the Pulitzer Prize in history for No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II. She is also the author of the bestsellers Wait Till Next Year, The Fitzgeralds and the Kennedys, and Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream. Goodwin was a White House Fellow during the Lyndon B. Johnson administration and taught government courses at Harvard University. She won the Lincoln Prize in 2006 for her book Team of Rivals and is a member of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission advisory board; she is also a political news analyst for NBC, CBS, and ABC, among others, and she lectures around the country. Goodwin lives in Concord, Massachusetts, with her husband.

About the Narrator

Edward Herrmann (1943–2014) was one of America’s top audiobook narrators. He won multiple Audie Awards and twenty-two Earphones Awards, and his narration of the King James version of the Bible remains a benchmark in the industry.