Hero, Champion of Social Justice, Benign Friend: Theodore Roosevelt in American Memory
Following scholarship that suggests that societies crave continuity in their collective memories,
this article identifies recurring themes in American memories of Theodore Roosevelt as an
intensely masculine leader, a champion of social justice, and a loveable character. Memories of
Roosevelt since his death have not been static. Leftist scholars and activists have contributed to
counter-memories of TR as chauvinist, racist, and a dangerous imperialist.
The interplay between memories and counter-memories of Theodore Roosevelt suggests that while cultural pluralism enables a multiplicity of memories to flourish within American society, it does not ensure that counter-memories expand beyond those who generate them. The resilience of memories of Roosevelt as a hero, champion, and friend is indicative of durable qualities in Americans’ selfimage.
|Persistent URL||dx.doi.org/10.4000/ejas.13403, hdl.handle.net/1765/119276|
|Journal||European Journal of American Studies|
Hull, C.S.M. (2018). Hero, Champion of Social Justice, Benign Friend: Theodore Roosevelt in American Memory. European Journal of American Studies, 13(2), 1–21. doi:10.4000/ejas.13403