Bestselling Historian, Wall Street Journal Columnist, and Speaker on Leadership
Amanda Foreman burst onto the literary scene in 2000 with her prize-winning #1 bestseller, Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, which was turned into a documentary, a radio play starring Dame Judi Dench, and a movie starring Keira Knightley and Ralph Fiennes. Eleven years later, she won praise for her follow-up, A World on Fire: Britain's Crucial Role in the Civil War, which The New York Times named as one of the Top Ten Books of 2011. World on Fire also won the Fletcher Pratt award and was a finalist for five other national and international prizes.
Surrounded on All Sides: Five Leadership Lessons From History
Amanda Foreman delivers a startling new talk on leadership, based on five great leaders throughout history. While no single quality can or should define a leader, it is in times of absolute crisis—when every reasonable course of action appears to be blocked—that the psychological bedrock of a great leader becomes exposed. In this talk, Foreman takes a brief and entertaining look at the lives of five historical leaders, from Spartacus to General Lewis 'Chesty' Puller, and examines how each reacted when faced with immense pressure. She brilliantly fleshes out what we can learn from them: Flight is not an option. Create an ideal for others to follow. People rebel against command and control structures. Tap into your employee's emotional intelligence. Keep motivation levels high, even in stressful situations. With her trademark wit and great command of her subject, Foreman brings new light to the age old topic of leadership.
The Selling of the American Civil War: How to win new friends and corrupt foreign politicians
Amanda Foreman’s blockbuster book A World on Fire covers one of the least known great stories of British and American history. In this accessible talk, Foreman brings to life the people on both sides of the Atlantic who were swept up in the American Civil War: generals, statesmen, society hostesses, spies, diplomats, nurses, journalists and adventurers, as well as ordinary soldiers fighting for both North and South. Amusing, and at times shocking, Foreman demonstrates the disastrous consequences that followed after the Union abandoned the arena of world opinion to the Confederacy—and everything that followed. As a popular bestselling historian, Foreman reveals a lost chapter of our history, and tells us why the lessons learned then are still relevant today.
The Fall and Rise of the Duchess: It is never too late to be the person you could have been
In this extremely popular lecture, Amanda Foreman tells the story of Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, the famous ancestor of Diana, Princess of Wales, who threw away her glamorous life as the Empress of Fashion and Doyenne of the Whig Party in a drink-fuelled orgy of gambling, addiction, and illicit love. Abandoned by her husband, penniless, and virtually friendless, Georgiana clawed her way back to sobriety and political success through sheer force of will. Foreman makes the life of Georgiana come to vivid life, and, importantly, connects it to today’s culture: how much, and how little, has changed, and what example does her life provide today’s students?
A World on Fire: An Epic History of Two Nations Divided
Acclaimed historian Amanda Foreman follows the phenomenal success of her New York Times bestseller Georgiana: Duchess of Devonshire with her long-awaited second work of nonfiction: the fascinating story of the American Civil War and the major role played by Britain and its citizens in that epic struggle.
Even before the first rumblings of secession shook the halls of Congress, British involvement in the coming schism was inevitable. Britain was dependent on the South for cotton, and in turn the Confederacy relied almost exclusively on Britain for guns, bullets, and ships. The Union sought to block any diplomacy between the two and consistently teetered on the brink of war with Britain. For four years the complex web of relationships between the countries led to defeats and victories both minute and history-making. In A World on Fire, Amanda Foreman examines the fraught relations from multiple angles while she introduces characters both humble and grand, bringing them to vivid life over the course of her sweeping and brilliant narrative.
Between 1861 and 1865, thousands of British citizens volunteered for service on both sides of the Civil War. From the first cannon blasts on Fort Sumter to Lee's surrender at Appomattox, they served as officers and infantrymen, sailors and nurses, blockade runners and spies. Through personal letters, diaries, and journals, Foreman has woven together their experiences to form a panoramic yet intimate view of the war on the front lines, in the prison camps, and in the great cities of both the Union and the Confederacy. Through the eyes of these brave volunteers we see the details of the struggle for life and the great and powerful forces that threatened to demolish a nation. In the drawing rooms of London and the offices of Washington, on muddy fields and aboard packed ships, Foreman reveals the decisions made, the beliefs held and contested, and the personal triumphs and sacrifices that ultimately led to the reunification of America. A World on Fire is a complex and groundbreaking work that will surely cement Amanda Foreman's position as one of the most influential historians of our time.
The Duchess (Originally published as Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire)
A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK. Now a major motion picture starring Keira Knightley and Ralph Fiennes.
Lady Georgiana Spencer was the great-great-great-great-aunt of Diana, Princess of Wales, and was nearly as famous in her day. In 1774 Georgiana achieved immediate celebrity by marrying William Cavendish, fifth duke of Devonshire, one of England's richest and most influential aristocrats. She became the queen of fashionable society and founder of the most important political salon of her time. But Georgiana's public success concealed an unhappy marriage, a gambling addiction, drinking, drug-taking, and rampant love affairs with the leading politicians of the day.
With penetrating insight, Amanda Foreman reveals a fascinating woman whose struggle against her own weaknesses, whose great beauty and flamboyance, and whose determination to play a part in the affairs of the world make her a vibrant, astonishingly contemporary figure.
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