First Son: The Biography Of Richard M. Daley by Keith KoenemanFirst Son: The Biography Of Richard M. Daley by Keith Koeneman

First Son: The Biography Of Richard M. Daley

byKeith Koeneman

Hardcover | March 28, 2013

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"Mayor Richard M. Daley dropped the bomb at a routine news conference at City Hall on Tuesday. With no prelude or fanfare, Mr. Daley announced that he would not seek re-election when his term expires next year. 'Simply put, it's time,' he said." New York Times, September 7, 2010

With those four words, an era ended. After twenty-two years, the longest-serving and most powerful mayor in the history of Chicago—and, arguably, America—stepped down, leaving behind a city that was utterly transformed, and a complicated legacy we are only beginning to evaluate.

In First Son, Keith Koeneman chronicles the sometimes Shakespearean, sometimes Machiavellian life of an American political legend. Making deft use of unprecedented access to key players in the Daley administration, as well as Chicago's business and cultural leaders, Koeneman draws on more than one hundred interviews to tell an up-close, insider story of political triumph and personal evolution.

With Koeneman as our guide, we follow young Daley from his beginnings as an average Bridgeport kid thought to lack his father's talent and charisma to his unlikely transformation into an iron-fisted leader. Daley not only escaped the giant shadow of his father but also transformed Chicago from a gritty, post-industrial Midwestern capital into a beautiful, sophisticated global city widely recognized as a model for innovative metropolises throughout the world.

But in spite of his many accomplishments, Richard M. Daley's record is far from flawless. First Son sets the dramatic improvement of certain parts of the city against the persistent realities of crime, financial stress , failing public housing, and dysfunctional schools. And it reveals that while in many ways Daley broke with the machine politics of his father, he continued to reward loyalty with favors, use the resources of city government to overwhelm opponents, and tolerate political corruption.

A nuanced portrait of a complex man, First Son shows Daley to be sensitive yet tough, impatient yet persistent, a street-smart fighter and detail-driven policy expert who not only ran Chicago, but was Chicago.

Keith Koeneman is a third-generation Chicagoan. He holds advanced degrees from Harvard University, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern University and writes on Chicago politics, history, and culture for the Huffington Post.
Title:First Son: The Biography Of Richard M. DaleyFormat:HardcoverDimensions:392 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.8 inPublished:March 28, 2013Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226449475

ISBN - 13:9780226449470

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Table of Contents

Cast of Characters


Part 1. A Kid from Bridgeport

1. Dick Daley

2. Every Happy Family Is the Same

3. Chicago Visions

Part 2. The Second Generation

4. From Father to Son

5. Darwinian Evolution

6. Mayoral Election of 1983

Part 3. Political Calculus

7. All Hell Breaks Loose

8. Restoration

9. Chicago, 1989.

10. A New Era

Part 4. Plugger

11. Crime and Grime

12. Takeover of Chicago Public Schools

Part 5. Civilizing Richie

13. Has Chicago Had a Sex Change?

14. Housing without Hope

15. Bill Daley

Part 6. Pride Is the First Deadly Sin

16. Crossing the River

17. The Two Faces of Richie Daley

18. Millennium Park

19. Corruption Tax

Part 7. Legacy

20. Global City, Parochial Council

21. One Too Many

22. Sisyphus

23. Bloodlines

24. Sunrise, November 29, 2011

Appendix A. Chicago Mayors since 1900

Appendix B. Election Results of Daley’s Political Campaigns

Appendix C. Timeline




Editorial Reviews

“Accessible and well researched, this well-written look at the Windy City’s oft-loved, oft-controversial mayor is a compelling read.”