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ERIC Number: ED173245
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Jul-6
Pages: 12
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Values in History: Changing Interpretations of the American Presidency from 1945-1965.
Miller, James R.
The paper traces the period 1945-65 when scholars of the American presidency changed their emphasis from the study of individual presidents to examination of the presidency itself and the powers it encompassed. The change was prompted by events such as World War II, development of the atomic bomb, and the Cold War. Evidence that mankind was capable of self-destruction and the threat of nuclear war led scholars to examine the powers of the presidency in shaping policy and leading the public. Contrary to traditional thinking, it was observed that the Presidential Cabinet was not a unified group. Richard Fenno ("The President's Cabinet," 1959) found that each cabinet member fends for himself with little consideration for cabinet unity. Also, cabinet members tend to develop their own lines of power which may conflict with objectives of the administration. Several studies revealed that the President does not necessarily stand at the head of his party and that his leadership is not essential to the proper functioning of the party on all levels. Rather, it appears that both parties contain wings which support either the President or the Congress. One analysis of the relationship between the President and Congress showed that Congress initiated more legislation than did the President. In terms of foreign policy, the President became a figure of international leadership following World War II. (Author/AV)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at Conference on the Teaching of History (Denton, Texas, October 27-28, 1978)