Tracing the legacy of Barbara Bush

Barbara Bush’s life is chronicled in a recently released book by first lady historian Dr. Myra Gutin.By Jess Royko

Barbara Bush is more than just the wife of the 41st president of the United States. She is a mother who lost a child, a political asset to George H.W. Bush, an advocate of literacy and so much more. Dr. Myra Gutin of the Communication and Journalism Department reveals the complex yet intriguing nature of Barbara Bush in her narrative, Barbara Bush: Presidential Matriarch.

Barbara Bush is a fascinating woman and exceptional in that she was the second woman in history to be the wife of one president and mother of another. Gutin allows the reader to see Barbara Bush beyond the façade and imbues her with a down-to-earth quality.

During George H.W. Bush’s years as vice president and president, the world got to know Barbara Bush.

Barbara Bush dedicated her life to her children and certainly to her husband. She had been an integral part of the campaign process and had become a successful and effective public speaker using her wit, sense of humor and family stories.

This book is not only interesting, but it is also well-researched. Gutin cites Barbara Bush’s speeches, interviews with her staff, and even an interview with the former first lady herself. Such in-depth research makes the biography more enticing to read.

This biography shows why Gutin is considered an expert on the American first lady.

Barbara Bush: Presidential Matriarch allows the reader to really get a sense of what happened behind the scenes, so to speak, during George H.W. Bush’s presidential term and vice presidential terms.

The reader gets to see just how big an asset Barbara Bush was to her husband, and even more than that, how big a role she played during her time as second and first lady. Even though Barbara Bush left the White House almost 15 years ago, she still plays an active role, whether it is through her charitable events or literacy programs.

The best thing about this biography is that Gutin doesn’t try to “butter up” Barbara Bush; instead she just tells it like it is. She presents the facts and allow readers to make their own interpretations about Barbara Bush.

This biography of Barbara Bush is certainly a remarkable and exciting read, and it provides the reader with a chance to learn about the former first lady and the first Bush administration. It is a well-written narrative, and Gutin constantly engages and intrigues the reader as she reveals the multifaceted woman that is Barbara Bush. One thing is clear: Barbara Bush certainly did not lead a dull life, and she was always doing something, whether it was for her family or for the nation.

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