About the Book: The Audacity of Hope
Barack Obamas political vision for the future of America.
Barack Obamas success in becoming President-Elect of the United States means he will dramatically change the face that his country presents to the world. In this bestselling book Obama discusses the importance of empathy in politics, his hopes for a different America with different policies, and how the ideals of its democracy can be renewed.
With intimacy and self-deprecating humour, Obama describes his experiences as a politician, about balancing his family life and his public vocation.
About the Author: Barack Obama
President Barack Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on August 4, 1961. He graduated with a degree in political science from Columbia University in 1983. Before moving to Chicago in 1985, he worked at Business International Corporation and then at the New York Public Interest Research Group. In Chicago, he worked as a community organizer with low-income residents. He entered Harvard Law School in 1988, was elected editor of the Harvard Law Review in 1990, and graduated in 1991. After graduating law school, he returned to Chicago and became a civil rights lawyer. He also taught at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 2004. In 1997, he was elected to the Illinois State Senate and served until 2004. In 2000, he made an unsuccessful bid for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. In 2005, he was elected to the U.S. Senate. In 2007, he announced his candidacy for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination. On November 4, 2008, Obama defeated John McCain in the general election and became the first African-American to be elected President of the United States. He wrote Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance in 1995 and The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream in 2006. He won Best Spoken Word Album Grammy Awards in 2006 and 2008 for abridged audiobook versions of both books. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009. His book Of Thee I Sing came out in 2010.
20 Second Interview: A Few Words with Barack Obama
Q: How did writing a book that you knew would be read so closely by so many compare to writing your first book, when few people knew who you were?
A: In many ways, Dreams from My Father was harder to write. At that point, I wasnt even sure that I could write a book. And writing the first book really was a process of self-discovery, since it touched on my family and my childhood in a much more intimate way. On the other hand, writing The Audacity of Hope paralleled the work that I do every day–trying to give shape to all the issues that we face as a country, and providing my own personal stamp on them.
Q: What is your writing process like? You have such a busy schedule, how did you find time to write?
A: Im a night owl, so I usually wrote at night after my Senate day was over, and after my family was asleep–from 9:30 p.m. or so until 1 a.m. I would work off an outline–certain themes or stories that I wanted to tell–and get them down in longhand on a yellow pad. Then Id edit while typing in what Id written.
Q: If readers are to come away from The Audacity of Hope with one action item (a New Years Resolution for 2007, perhaps?), what should it be?
A: Get involved in an issue that youre passionate about. It almost doesnt matter what it is–improving the school system, developing strategies to wean ourselves off foreign oil, expanding health care for kids. We give too much of our power away, to the professional politicians, to the lobbyists, to cynicism. And our democracy suffers as a result.
Q: Youre known for being able to work with people across ideological lines. Is that possible in todays polarized Washington?
A: It i
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