Franklin and Eleanor: An Extraordinary Marriage

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Melbourne Univ. Publishing, 2011 - Australia - 345 pages

Franklin Delano and Eleanor Roosevelt's marriage is one of the most celebrated and scrutinized partnerships in presidential history. It raised eyebrows in their lifetimes and has only become more controversial since their deaths. From FDR's lifelong romance with Lucy Mercer to Eleanor's purported lesbianism--and many scandals in between--the American public has never tired of speculating about the ties that bound these two headstrong individuals. Some claim that Eleanor sacrificed her personal happiness to accommodate FDR's needs; others claim that the marriage was nothing more than a gracious facade for political convenience. No one has told the full story until now.
In this groundbreaking new account of the marriage, Hazel Rowley describes the remarkable courage and lack of convention--private and public--that kept FDR and Eleanor together. She reveals a partnership that was both supportive and daring. Franklin, especially, knew what he owed to Eleanor, who was not so much behind the scenes as heavily engaged in them. Their relationship was the product of FDR and Eleanor's conscious efforts--a partnership that they created according to their own ambitions and needs.
In this dramatic and vivid narrative, set against the great upheavals of the Depression and World War II, Rowley paints a portrait of a tender lifelong companionship, born of mutual admiration and compassion. Most of all, she depicts an extraordinary evolution--from conventional Victorian marriage to the bold and radical partnership that has made Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt go down in history as one of the most inspiring and fascinating couples of all time.


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User Review  - siri51 -

An excellent biography - of both Roosevelts. Their marriage was complicated by illness, world events, affairs but also partnership and warm friendship. They both had amazing stamina for public life. I am looking forward to visiting their home and FDR's library when in NY. Read full review

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User Review  - Chris_El - LibraryThing

As an Anglophile one must acknowledge that FDR was one of the greatest friends of England prior to and during our (the American) time fighting WWII. He skirted the law of the land to give as much as ... Read full review


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About the author (2011)

Hazel Rowley is the author of "Christina Stead: A Biography" a New York Times notable book. She has taught at Iowa University & Deakins University in Melbourne & is a Bunting Fellow at Radcliffe College.

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