On June 19 the new, already hotly debated biography on Barack Obama will be published.
Republicans are already desperately waiting for the biography, because it could contain explosive information. The biography, Barack Obama: The Story is told by his ex-girlfriends, old friends and classmates and written by the Pulitzer-prize winning journalist David Maraniss. The reactions to this book could be huge and the Republicans will scan every page in the hope to find something they can turn against Obama during elections.
Although the book could lead to a lot of discussions and attention, it’s not likely that Obama’s image will be damaged heavily by Cook’s diary. During the four years of being president, Obama has created a cool and liberal image of himself that won’t be hurt by intimate details. In fact, it could turn out that the book-release even helps him to generate media coverage right on time before elections.
Genevieve Cook, a white woman, is one of the many narrators in the book. Cook and Obama met at a Christmas party in New York when Obama was 22-years old. Cook paints the president-to-be as struggling with his identity, but also as somebody ambitious and eager to get ahead, with his eye on the next big thing for himself. Ambition is not despicable, on the contrary it is a characteristic generally admired by society, because it is the essence of the American dream to build up one’s future by hard work.
Obama seeks to portray himself as a searching, rational, multicultural man. Maraniss’ biography threatens that picture by questioning it. Was Obama’s journey entirely spiritual and intellectual? Or was it also grounded in the lower realms of ambition and calculation?
Despite wandering from the more presidential themes of the official Obama biography Dreams from My Father, Barack Obama: The Story won’t have a massive political impact. If Obama uses the media attention from the book wisely, he could even profit from it in election 2012.