Hudson Institute hosted a discussion of Hudson Visiting Fellow Tevi Troy’s new book, “What Jefferson Read, Ike Watched, and Obama Tweeted: 200 Years of Popular Culture in the White House” on September 17, 2013.
History typically evaluates a president on his policies and decisions, whether they concern foreign policy, health care, the economy, or other various issues. It’s easy to forget that the president, too, is a person with distinct cultural tastes. A president’s extracurricular activities and pastimes—music, theater, books, TV shows, movies, radio stations—can be just as telling as the “hard stuff” during his presidency. In fact, what presidents do in their free time can even influence their presidential decisions and the image they project to the nation.