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  • Fecha de salida: 2008
  • Descargado: 10704

Starred Review. SignatureReviewed by Michael BeschlossIn this modest, elegant, appealing and introspective autobiography, Ted Sorensen writes about his service to John Kennedy as senator and president with a candor that, he confesses, would have been inconceivable while writing his glowing 1965 reminiscence, Kennedy, or while Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis was alive. The Nebraska-born Sorensen describes himself as a moralist not unlike his Unitarian father, C.A. Sorensen, a onetime state attorney general (and a Republican). He reproaches himself for still feeling shame and stigma about the emotional illnesses of his Russian-Jewish mother, Annis Chaikin Sorensen, and for his two divorces, which will make him feel embarrassed until my dying day.Sorensen does not spare the man who remains his old hero. He declines to defend or rationalize JFK’s carefree misconduct and broken marriage vows, writing, It was wrong, and he knew it was wrong. He criticizes Kennedy’s failure while a senator in 1954 to help censure the Wisconsin demagogue Joseph McCarthy. Unlike some of Kennedy’s most extreme defenders, he does not insist that JFK would have withdrawn American troops from Vietnam after reelection in 1964. Excluded from Kennedy’s glittering social life, Sorensen recalls the president’s cool crowd regarded him with thinly veiled patronizing. New sidelights include Jackie’s later private observation that her husband was truly frightened that Lyndon Johnson might someday become president. Sorensen knows that history will view him mainly as architect of much of Kennedy’s enduring rhetoric—and the collaborator (at least) on JFK’s famous 1956 book, Profiles in Courage. Such prominence unsettled the Kennedys, who wanted JFK’s speeches and writings to be taken as his own. Sorensen reveals that after the commercial success of Profiles, Kennedy privately gave him a large share of the book’s substantial royalties, and Sorensen wrote his boss a letter pledging not to push for recognition of my participation in its writing. The faithful Sorensen felt crushed in 1987 when Jackie Onassis wrote him an angry letter implying (unfairly) that Sorensen might be ambitious to seize credit for her husband’s speeches. Sorensen says he never knew how much his old frostiness and protectiveness of his relationship with JFK estranged some colleagues. Blessed wi



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