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The literary contributions of American Presidents

American presidents not only change the face of the world with their personal political and moral visions of how modern civilization should rise, and sometimes fall, but often their contributions to the evolution of society reaches us, beyond their decisions made within the Oval Office, in the form of philosophical and autobiographical literary reflections. The sculpting of analytical biographies of our leaders has always been a focus of historians, placing each era of power beneath a microscope to dissect the dichotomy between the defining successes and failures. However, many of the our elected country leaders take up the pen, most once they have left office, but some, such as with our current president Barack Obama, while their term is still in its infancy. The contents of these books range from personal critiques of their fellow politicians and tell-all confessionals of what really occurred behind the conspiracies and scandals, to patriotic rallies to reclaim the American Dream and Nobel Prize winning visions of world peace.

Here is a short list of selections written by a few of the recent presidents for you to pick up and peruse this 4th of July, while you are lounging by the pool enjoying your freedom to consume mass quantities of libations and barbeque. No matter your political orientation, there are selections running the gamut from Jimmy Carter to Richard Nixon, each particuarly interesting and insightful in their own right.

Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance
Barack Obama

The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream

Barack Obama

Change We Can Believe In: Barack Obama's Plan to Renew America's Promise

Barack Obama

Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World

Bill Clinton

My Life
Bill Clinton

All the Best, George Bush: My Life in Letters and Other Writings
George H.W. Bush

The China Diary of George H. W. Bush: The Making of a Global President

Jeffrey A. Engel and George H. W. Bush

The Reagan Diaries
Ronald Reagan and Douglas Brinkley

An American Life
Ronald Reagan

We Can Have Peace in the Holy Land: A Plan That Will Work

Jimmy Carter

Our Endangered Values: America's Moral Crisis
Jimmy Carter

Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid

Jimmy Carter

The House That Love Built: The Story of Linda & Millard Fuller, Founders of Habitat for Humanity and the Fuller Center for Housing
Jimmy Carter

Memoirs of Richard Nixon
Richard Milhous Nixon