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William Howard Taft

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Reviews of William Howard Taft

Overall customer rating: 2.000
TheGrinch

The benefits of time

by TheGrinch on Dec 31, 2009

History has a clever way of showing us the past. It's a little more difficult to write an account of the past when it's still fresh. Duffy was rather quick to write this biography of the 27th President (it was published the year Taft died). I grant that he had been out of office for some time. Still, the bulk (if not all of) this accounting had to have been written while Taft was alive. In the years since, we've had the benefit of reading others' accounts of the man. History has certainly shown him to have been an ineffective chief executive who had the great misfortune of following Teddy Roosevelt into the White House. Duffy clearly loved Taft. This biography teeters on the brink of what is often called "revisionism". It's other major flaw is the narrow scope of the biography. Far too much time is spent quoting legal decisions and discussing travel. Almost no time is given to the personal side of the man. What of his family? There are photos of him and his children... but nothing is said of them. His wife is barely mentioned. I'm afraid this biography attempts to make a masterpiece out of an inkblot.

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