• Summary
  • Contents

Primary source materials are a great way for students to experience firsthand a historic event, to more fully understand a pivotal actor or figure, or to explore legislation or a judicial decision. Students leave these readings better prepared to grapple with secondary sources. In fact, they can often support a different interpretation or more critically engage with analysis. This new volume—with 50 documents that include speeches, court cases, letters, diary entries, excerpts from autobiographies, treaties, legislation, regulations and reports, documentary photographs, ad stills, public opinion polls, transcripts, and press releases—is a great starting point for any parties and elections course. Careful editing, pithy headnotes, and discussion questions all enhance this useful reader.

Franklin Roosevelt's “Commonwealth Club” Speech* (1932)
Franklin Roosevelt's “commonwealth club” speech (1932)
  • How did the use of radio revolutionize campaigns and elections?
  • How did Roosevelt criticize his opposition while rarely mentioning President Hoover or the Republican Party by name? Why might he have pursued this strategy?

The Commonwealth Club of California was founded in 1903 ...

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