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War within and without: The Diaries and Letters of Anne Morrow Lindbergh: 1939-1944 (Harvest Book) Paperback – 31 Dec 1995
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
This book contains her journals and letters from the period 1939-1944. Although many things happen during this time, the focus of the book is on her husband and his involvement with the isolationist America First Committee. It is by turns painful and almost offensive to read the young Lindbergh as she attempts to defend her husband for his opposition to US war participation. She points out correctly in the introduction that they did not then have the benefit of historical hindsight. Still, it is difficult not to cringe as you read about Charles and his decision to criticize the Jews for pushing the US to enter the war. Anne herself during that period is tarnished by the charge of fascism as she publishes her book The Wave which tries to make sense of the changes in Europe.
These journals are an invaluable historical window into those conflicted pre-war years in the US. The national reluctance to act has now been almost forgotten, and it is a rare person who is willing to admit that they had taken a stance against US participation. I doubt that there are many texts like this one.
Although Lindbergh wrote many books which were not journals, her style of writing is ideally suited to the journal form. Her prose is as lovely here as it is in anything that she ever published. The descriptions of her love for Charles or the death of a beloved family dog ground the political aspect of the book and are powerful enough to bring tears to the eyes. The fact that I so often disagreed with her politically only made her more human-- and ultimately made the book more moving to read.
Highly recommended for virtually any reader interested in history, essays, or journal writing.
I recommend it to anyone who has respect for the Lindbergh family writings.
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