The Success of Franklin Roosevelt

1431 Words Jun 21st, 2018 6 Pages
The Success of Franklin Roosevelt

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was President of the USA during a period encompassed two of the most significant events of recent history- the American Depression and the Second World War. In this essay we will look at the qualities that made FDR such a notable President; we will also examine some of the circumstances surrounding the Presidency to discover if perhaps that also had an impact on perceptions of both the man and his Presidency.

We will also be looking at Eleanor Roosevelt, his wife and one of his strongest political assets. Eleanor’s terms in the White House formed a bridge between the First Ladies of the past, where domesticity and duty to family
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During the Coolidge era many people had bought radio sets, but the concept of media relations was still in it’s infancy. Roosevelt was very much a pioneer In that field.

Roosevelt also developed the concept of the press conference; he held nearly 1000 in his Presidency. As he was able to operate without having had vetted questions presented beforehand, this must surely have indicated a man confident of his own intellectual abilities. In modern times Presidents spend vast amounts on media consultants and press relations; Roosevelt seems able to have had an innate aptitude for this.

As well as being a natural leader, imbued with both charm and self belief, Roosevelt was fortunate to have been in the right place at the right time. When Roosevelt campaigned for Presidency, there were doubts whether capitalism and democracy could survive the Depression; Stalinism in the USSR and the rise of the Nazi party in Germany show evidence for this concern. Theologian Reinhold Niebuhr was particularly concerned with the ‘threat’ from the Communist party: ‘Capitalism is dying.. Let no-one delude himself by hoping for reform within’. (Time Magazine 100). In fact, by combining to some extent the national control of a dictator with philanthropy, humanitarianism and a belief in Democracy, Roosevelt maintained the ‘American

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