LBJ Professor Releases Book on Rise and Fall of the American Presidency | LBJ School of Public Affairs | The University of Texas at Austin

AUSTIN, Texas, September 11, 2017 – Jeremi Suri, the Mack Brown Distinguished Chair for Leadership in Global Affairs and a professor at The University of Texas at Austin, has released a new book on the rise and fall of the American presidency, titledThe Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America’s Highest Office.” Suri holds a joint appointment at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and the College of Liberal Arts as a professor of public affairs and history, respectively. 


In the book, Suri argues that the successful presidents of the past created unrealistic expectations for every president since John F. Kennedy, with enormously problematic implications for American politics. Suri illustrates that the evolution of the presidency from the limited role envisioned by the Founding Fathers to its current status as the most powerful job in the world makes it almost impossible to fulfill the expectations placed upon it, outlining the inevitable mismatch between presidential promises and the structural limitations of the office.

“Over two centuries the power of the American presidency has risen, but the effectiveness of the office has declined,” Suri said. “I wrote “The Impossible Presidency” to understand this contradictory phenomenon.”


“Many Americans are frustrated with their leaders,” continues Suri. “My book seeks to get beyond the name-calling and partisanship, to understand how the presidency has evolved to our current moment, and how we can make the office better for the future. Studying history gives us the broader view that we so desperately need in a time of deep division.” 

Suri, a presidential historian, is the author and editor of nine books on contemporary politics and foreign policy. His other books include "Henry Kissinger and the American Century," "Liberty's Surest Guardian: American Nation-Building from the Founders to Obama" and "Foreign Policy Breakthroughs: Cases in Successful Diplomacy" (with LBJ School professor Robert Hutchings). Suri is a public lecturer and frequent contributor to popular media, writing and commenting on American politics and global policy.

The Impossible Presidency” is published by Hachette Book Group.

Book Tour Schedule

1. UCLA Royce Hall, Los Angeles, September 10, 2017. Learn more.

2. National History Center and Woodrow Wilson Center, Washington DC, September 11, 2017. Learn more.

3. WWII Museum, New Orleans, LA, September 12, 2017 — OFFICIAL BOOK LAUNCH. Learn more.

4. Millennial Action Project, Washington DC, September 13, 2017. Learn more.

5. Center for Strategic & International Studies, Washington DC, September 13, 2017. Learn more.

6. Politics and Prose, Washington DC, September 13, 2017. Learn more.

7. Miller Center, Charlottesville, VA, September 14, 2017. Learn more.

8. Institute for the Study of Diplomacy, Washington DC, September 15, 2017. Learn more.

9.  Quick Center for the Performing Arts, Fairfield, CT, September 16, 2017

10. Center for the Study of Race and Democracy, LBJ School, September 20, 2017. Learn more.

11. Pebble Beach Authors and Ideas Festival, Pebble Beach, CA, September 23, 2017. Learn more.

12. “View and Brews,” Austin, TX, September 26, 2017. Learn more.

13. World Affairs Council Events of Dallas/Ft. Worth, September 28-29, 2017. Learn more.

14. Powell’s Bookstore, Portland, Oregon, October 6, 2017. Learn more.

15. Gerding Theater, Portland, Oregon, October 7, 2017.

16. Brazos Bookstore, Houston, TX, October 11, 2017. Learn more.

17. Winstead Law Firm Breakfast, Houston, TX , October 12, 2017.

18. Warwick’s Bookstore, San Diego, CA, October 13, 2017. Learn more.

19. The Auditorium at TSRI, San Diego, CA, October 14, 2017.

20. Clements Center/Strauss Center/LBJ School, Austin, TX, October 18, 2017. Learn more.

21. Detroit Institute of the Arts, Detroit, MI, October 22, 2017.

22. Austin Woman’s Club, Austin, TX, October 26, 2017.

23. Fresno City College Theater, Fresno, CA, October 28, 2017. Learn more.

24. Downtown Rotary, Madison, WI, November 1, 2017.

25. Mystery to Me Bookstore, Madison, WI, November 1, 2017. Learn more.

26. Vantage Point, Madison Club, Madison, WI, November 2, 2017.

27. Wisconsin Book Festival, Madison, WI, November 2, 2017. Learn more.

28. Capital Group Book Party, Madison, WI, November 2, 2017.

29. Madison Institute Breakfast, Madison, WI, November 3, 2017.

30. Sacramento Memorial Auditorium, Sacramento, CA, November 4, 2017.

31. Texas Book Festival, Austin, TX, November 5, 2017. Learn more.

32. Lakeway Breakfast Club, Austin, TX, November 8, 2017.

33. Miller Center, Symposium on US President and Russian Leaders, Charlottesville, VA, November 8-10, 2017. Learn more.

34. Tuckahoe Woman's Club, Richmond, VA, November 15, 2017

35. Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass, November 16, 2017.

36. Harvard Bookstore, Cambridge, Mass, November 16, 2017

37. Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO, November 17, 2017

38. Tattered Cover Bookstore, Denver, CO, November 17, 2017. Learn more.

39. Querencia Retirement Community at Barton Creek, Austin, TX, November 29, 2017.

40. Fashion Institute of Technology Haft Auditorium, New York City, NY, December 3, 2017. Learn more.

41. Winstead Dallas breakfast, Dallas, TX, December 12, 2017

42. Charlottesville Committee on Foreign Relations, Charlottesville, VA, December 14, 2017. Learn more.

43. Metropolitan Breakfast Club, Austin, TX, January 10, 2018. Learn more.

44. SMU Center for Presidential History, Dallas, TX, January 25, 2018. Learn more.

45. Poly Prep High School and Bay Ridge Community, NYC, NY, January 29, 2018

46. NY Historical Society, NYC, NY, January 30, 2018. Learn more.

47. Tower Center, Dallas, TX, February 7, 2018.
Speak at Lunch Seminar

48. Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, Phoenix, AZ, February 11, 2018.

49. New Hope Event Center, Naples, FL, March 3, 2018. Learn more.

50. Hilton Palm Beach Airport, Palm Beach, FL, March 17, 2018.

51. Institute for Historical Studies, Austin, TX, March 20, 2018.

52. Marriott St. Louis West, St Louis, MO, April 21, 2018.