(845) 358-9126 | 8 S. Broadway | Nyack, New York 10960 | pickwickbooks@gmail.com | Open 7 Days a Week!
(845) 358-9126 | 8 S. Broadway | Nyack, New York 10960 | pickwickbooks@gmail.com | Open 7 Days a Week!
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We Called It a War

We Called It a War

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We Called It a War
Author(s): Sargent Shriver

We Called It A War is Sargent Shriver’s first-hand account of leading President Johnson’s War on Poverty. Written on the cusp of the 1970s, the manuscript was recently rediscovered among Shriver’s personal papers and subsequently edited by long-time friend and law partner, David Birenbaum. The book recounts Shriver’s role in translating President Johnson’s audacious pledge to end poverty into a working set of social programs that continue to uplift and empower communities across the United States today.

In leading this effort, Shriver was tasked with drafting the requisite legislation, ushering it through a skeptical Congress, creating the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO), and recruiting the talented anti-poverty warriors who would take the OEO from concept to implementation.

Shriver’s words reveal a public administrator skilled at creating major social policy; a global citizen driven by his Catholic faith and commitment to social justice; a principled pragmatist who successfully executed grand ideas; a social entrepreneur whose skeptical approach to bureaucracy enabled him to liberate the creative energies of the diverse individuals who collaborated with him; and a politician who earned the trust and respect of his adversaries.

Shriver’s anti-poverty efforts continues to resonate. Virtually all of the War on Poverty programs, many of them conceived personally by Shriver, continue to deliver tangible, consequential benefits to millions of people in all stages of life. These programs include Head start, Community Action, Legal Services, Job Corps, Americorps VISTA, Foster Grandparents, Upward Bound, and Neighborhood Health Services. Fifty years on, Shriver’s words remind us that to achieve equal opportunity and justice for all of our sisters and brothers, we must again create an environment that nurtures bold ideas and empowers decisive, community-based action.

"Just as Sarge Shriver was the man for the moment to lead LBJ’s War on Poverty, so the discovery of this invaluable unfinished manuscript has come at the very moment when we need to believe that structural inequalities in our society can and must be addressed. Reading Shriver’s riveting account of the early days of Head Start, Job Corps, and Vista is a reminder of a time when people believed that collective action could truly make a difference. It is that conviction, that belief that needs to be recaptured today and this book serves as a profound testament to that belief.” —Doris Kearns Goodwin, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and historian
"We Called It a War is about one of the truly great men of the twentieth century. I recommend it to anyone in need of a reminder that the work begun by pioneers like Sarge Shriver is both inspiring and far from done.” —Laurence H. Tribe, Carl M. Loeb University Professor and Professor of Constitutional Law Emeritus, Harvard Law School

ISBN:  9781948122672