This authoritative biography of George F. Kennan is more than simply the life story of a prominent public figure: It is also a history of the Cold War viewed from the perspective of its most influential strategist and as interpreted by our most distinguished historian of the conflict that divided the world for more than four decades. The collaboration between these two seminal thinkers—Kennan and John Lewis Gaddis—has produced a volume that should be a must-read for every serious student of the Cold War and international politics.

George F. Kennan: An American Life is a work that was long in gestation in the minds of both its subject and author.1 Gaddis, Robert A. Lovett Professor of History at Yale University and the author of several path-breaking books on the Cold War, began...


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