At the moment, I have roughly 175 books on presidents and the presidency in my library. Out of that collection, I count 6 whose authors I would identify as conservative or right-of-center. I must admit to being surprised by this wide disparity. While I consider myself to be left-of-center, I certainly didn't create this gap intentionally. I'm sure there are a number of opinions on how this might happen, but what I'm more interested in is how this affects me as a reader.
I would have to assume that this imbalance affects my view of the presidency and its occupants. Which makes me wonder: Would a larger proportion of conservatives in my reading lead me to reconsider some of my long-held views? Would their work seem biased or overly ideological? Would my own biases cause me to dismiss their arguments unfairly?
The only way to begin to answer these questions is to create a reading list and keep track of my reactions. So I'm doing that here in a series of posts I'm calling "Right From Left." I've compiled a working list of right-wing/conservative historians I will be reading below. If I've missed anyone obvious, please let me know. You can reply in the comments below or you can reach my by email on the contact page.
Richard Norton Smith
Harlow Giles Unger
Please be sure to check back and see how this project evolves!