Inside the Presidential Debates: Their Improbable Past and Promising Future

Author:   Newton N. Minow ,  Craig L. LaMay ,  Vartan Gregorian
Publisher:   The University of Chicago Press
ISBN:  

9780226530413


Pages:   240
Publication Date:   11 April 2008
Format:   Hardback
Availability:   In Print   Availability explained
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Inside the Presidential Debates: Their Improbable Past and Promising Future


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Overview

Newton N. Minow's long engagement with the world of television began nearly fifty years ago when President Kennedy appointed him chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. As its head, Minow would famously dub TV a vast wasteland, thus inaugurating a career dedicated to reforming television to better serve the public interest. Since then, he has been chairman of PBS and on the board of CBS and other companies, but his most lasting contribution remains his leadership on televised presidential debates.Written with longtime collaborator Craig L. LaMay, this fascinating history offers readers for the first time a genuinely inside look into the origins of the presidential debates and the many battles - both legal and personal - that have determined who has been allowed to debate and under what circumstances. The authors do not dismiss the criticism of the presidential debates in recent years but do come down solidly in favor of them, arguing that they are one of the great accomplishments of modern American electoral politics.Looking to the challenges posed by third-party candidates and the emergence of new media such as YouTube, Minow and LaMay ultimately make recommendations for the future, calling for the debates to become less formal, with candidates allowed to question each other and citizens allowed to question candidates directly. They also explore the many ways in which the Internet might serve to broaden the debates' appeal and informative power. Whether it's Clinton vs. Giuliani or McCain vs. Obama and a third candidate, Inside the Presidential Debates will be welcomed in 2008 by anyone interested in where this crucial part of our democracy is headed - and how it got there.

Full Product Details

Author:   Newton N. Minow ,  Craig L. LaMay ,  Vartan Gregorian
Publisher:   The University of Chicago Press
Imprint:   University of Chicago Press
Dimensions:   Width: 16.30cm , Height: 2.00cm , Length: 23.50cm
Weight:   0.462kg
ISBN:  

9780226530413


ISBN 10:   0226530418
Pages:   240
Publication Date:   11 April 2008
Audience:   General/trade ,  General
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Availability:   In Print   Availability explained
This item will be ordered in for you from one of our suppliers. Upon receipt, we will promptly dispatch it out to you. For in store availability, please contact us.

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Reviews

Minow and LaMay provide a fascinating look at the development of televised presidential debates and provide insightful suggestions on how to improve them. They're the perfect persons to guide our thinking on this important topic, plus they've made the issues fun to read about. - Walter Isaacson Newton Minow is the father of televised presidential debates, the most important new political institution of the last half-century. From his memo to Adlai Stevenson first suggesting the idea in 1955 to his sensible proposals for new formats in 2008, he has stood at the center of the 'debate over debates,' casting a cool eye on the medium and on the democratic process he has done so much to shape. This book tells that compelling story with wit, verve, and penetrating insight. - Jonathan Alter


Author Information

Newton N. Minow is senior counsel of Sidley Austin LLP, where he has practiced law since 1965, and is the Walter Annenberg Professor Emeritus of communications and law at Northwestern University. Craig L. LaMay is associate professor of journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. They are the coauthors of Abandoned in the Wasteland.

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