What Jefferson Read, Ike Watched, and Obama Tweeted: 200 Years of Popular Culture in the White House is a new study of popular culture in the White House. The blurb:
From Cicero to Snooki, the cultural influences on our American presidents are powerful and plentiful. Thomas Jefferson famously said “I cannot live without books,” and his library backed up the claim, later becoming the backbone of the new Library of Congress. Jimmy Carter watched hundreds of movies in his White House, while Ronald Reagan starred in a few in his own time. Lincoln was a theater-goer, while Obama kicked back at home to a few episodes of HBO’s “The Wire.”
America is a country built by thinkers on a foundation of ideas. Alongside classic works of philosophy and ethics, however, our presidents have been influenced by the books, movies, TV shows, viral videos, and social media sensations of their day. In What Jefferson Read, Ike Watched, and Obama Tweeted: 200 Years of Popular Culturen in the White House presidential scholar and former White House aide Tevi Troy combines research with witty observation to tell the story of how our presidents have been shaped by popular culture.
Chapter 7 on music and the quest for cool looks especially interesting.
Our old pal Buzzfeed has a post on people who had some tough times in their twenties before eventually becoming successful. Now is perhaps an appropriate time to tell such stories as thousands of 22 year old college graduates are starting their careers. There are people you recognize here — Jon Hamm, Kristin Wigg, and other celebrities — in fact almost the entire list is from the entertainment industry in one form or another. So, if I had to give some advice I would say, um, uh …. if there’s a good take away from this list of stories it would be uh … be very good looking, yes, that’s it … be attractive ….