Richard Nixon: The Life

April 16, 2018 | NH Institute of Politics

John A. Farrell discusses Richard Nixon's political career from start to finish. First, Nixon returned from World War II and claimed a seat in Congress. Within four years, he became a U.S. senator; in six, the vice president of the United States. Few came so far, so fast, and so alone. Fifty years ago, he was elected president, and forged a legacy of progressive reforms addressing health care, civil rights and protection of the environment - and a store of foreign policy triumphs, capped by an opening to China.

But he had another legacy as well, especially relevant to Americans today - a country divided and polarized over race, culture and the war in Vietnam. It was Nixon who launched the McCarthy era, who set South against North, and spurred the Silent Majority to despise and distrust the country's elites. He persuaded Americans to gnaw, as he did, on grievances, and to look at one another as enemies. Finally, in August 1974, after two years of the mesmerizing intrigue and scandal known as Watergate, he became the only president to resign in disgrace.

John A. Farrell is the author of Richard Nixon: The Life - a finalist for the PEN America, Los Angeles Times and Plutarch prizes for the best biography of 2017. His biography of Speaker Tip O’Neill won the Hardeman prize for the best book on Congress, and Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned, was awarded the Los Angeles Times prize for the best biography of 2012. Farrell is a graduate of the University of Virginia, and a former White House correspondent for The Boston Globe, where he also worked on the Spotlight team. He is currently at work on a biography of Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts. 

April 16, 2018 from 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

NHIOP Auditorium