A fourth-generation Morgenthau pens a lively and engaging biography of his family of high achievers, overlaid with a fresh view of changing Jewish acculturation during the past two American centuries. The first Morgenthau of record, Moses, was required to take a family name when the Jews of Bavaria were granted citizenship in 1813. Waiting in line at city hall in the predawn, he looked at the damp ground and decided to call himself Morgen Tau (``morning dew'' in German). His son, Lazarus, after an apprenticeship as a tailor, rose from poverty by selling cravats, and to wealth by manufacturing fine cigars. His entrepreneurship carried into making nicotine-free cigars, candy from pine needles, tongue scrapers, and gum-label machines. A multimillionaire, he emigrated to Brooklyn with his ten children and plunged into an extraordinary network of German Jewish families—Strausses, Sulzbergers, Guggenheims, Schlesingers. His son, Henry, retired from a successful business career at age 50 to enter public life. Woodrow Wilson appointed him ambassador to Turkey, a position considered a crucial Jewish outpost since Palestine was then under the suzerainty of the Ottoman Empire. From letters and family stories, the author assembles a gripping and tragic account of the 1915 Armenian massacre; Henry's grandfather attempted to get the US government to intervene and offered personally to donate $1 million to the Turkish government to fund an Armenian exodus, all to no avail. (The author's cousin, Barbara Tuchman, drew upon family memories of this period in writing The Guns of August.) Thirty years later, during WW II, the author's father, Henry, Jr.—FDR's secretary of the treasury—presented a scathing report to the President on the ``Acquiescence of the Government to the Murder of the Jews'' with equal lack of effect. Personal history that opens to a larger cultural and political account of the 20th century: fluent and passionately humane. (Thirty-two pages of b&w photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 1991

ISBN: 0-89919-976-3

Page Count: 436

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 1991

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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