Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream

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In this book, President Obama calls for a different brand of politics – a politics for those weary of bitter partisanship and alienated by the “endless clash of armies” we see in Congress and on the campaign trail…

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By Barack Obama

Before becoming the 44th President-elect of the United States, in July 2004, Barack Obama electrified the Democratic National Convention with an address that spoke to Americans across the political spectrum.

One phrase in particular anchored itself in listeners’ minds, a reminder that for all the discord and struggle to be found in our history as a nation, we have always been guided by a dogged optimism in the future – “the audacity of hope.”

In this book, President Obama calls for a different brand of politics – a politics for those weary of bitter partisanship and alienated by the “endless clash of armies” we see in Congress and on the campaign trail; a politics rooted in the faith, inclusiveness, and nobility of spirit at the heart of “our improbable experiment in democracy.”

He explores those forces – from the fear of losing, to the perpetual need to raise money, to the power of the media – that can stifle even the best-intentioned politician.

He also writes, with surprising intimacy and self-deprecating humor, about settling in as a senator, seeking to balance the demands of public service and family life, and his own deepening religious commitment.

At the heart of this book is President Obama’s vision of how we can move beyond our divisions to tackle the nation’s problems. He examines the growing economic insecurity of American families, the racial and religious tensions within the body politic, and the trans-national threats – from terrorism to pandemic – that gather beyond our shores.

And he grapples with the role that faith plays in a democracy – where it is vital but where it must never intrude. Underlying his stories about family, friends, members of the Senate, even the president, is a vigorous search for connection: the foundation for a radically hopeful political consensus.

This is a book about transforming power. Only by returning to the principles that gave birth to our Constitution, it says, can Americans repair a political process that is broken, and restore to working order a government that has fallen dangerously out of touch with millions of ordinary Americans. 384 pages. Softcover. 2007.

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