Churchill: The Unexpected Hero

Paperback | August 15, 2006

byPaul Addison

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During the Second World War, Winston Churchill won two resounding victories. The first was a victory over Nazi Germany, the second a victory over the legion of sceptics who had derided his judgement, denied his claims to greatness, and excluded him from high office on the grounds that he wassure to be a danger to King and Country. Churchill was the only British politician of the twentieth century to become an enduring national hero. The curious thing is that it happened at the age of 65, at a time when he was considered to be a spent force, with a track-record of disastrous decisions. All but the most hostile of hisadversaries conceded that he possessed great abilities, remarkable eloquence, and a streak of genius. But it was almost universally agreed that he was a shameless egotist, an opportunist without principles or convictions, an unreliable colleague, an erratic policy-maker who lacked judgement, and areckless amateur strategist with a dangerous passion for war and bloodshed. At one time or another in his career, he had offended every party and faction in the land, yet despite this he became the embodiment of national unity, an uncrowned king who threatened to eclipse the monarchy. In this incisive new biography, Paul Addison tells the story of Churchill's life in parallel with the history of his reputation. He seeks to explain why Churchill was transformed into a national hero, and why his heroic status has endured ever since in spite of the attempts of iconoclasts to debunkhim. He argues that we are now in a position to reach beyond the mythology - both positive and negative - to see the real Winston Churchill, a warrior-statesman whose qualities were remarkably consistent through all the vicissitudes of his career.

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During the Second World War, Winston Churchill won two resounding victories. The first was a victory over Nazi Germany, the second a victory over the legion of sceptics who had derided his judgement, denied his claims to greatness, and excluded him from high office on the grounds that he wassure to be a danger to King and Country. Chur...

Paul Addison is an Honorary Fellow at the Centre for the Study of the Two World Wars at the University of Edinburgh.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:320 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.81 inPublished:August 15, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199297436

ISBN - 13:9780199297436

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Table of Contents

Prologue1. The Youngest Man in Europe 1874-19012. The Renegade 1901-19113. The Lilliput Napoleon 1911-19154. The Winstonburg Line 1915-19245. Respectability Won and Lost 1924-19396. The Making of a Hero 1939-19457. Climbing Olympus 1945-19658. Churchill Past and PresentNotesBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

`a treat . . . full of arresting insights . . . scrupulously accurate in areas where other biographers frequently trip'Finest Hour: Journal of the Churchill Centre and Societies