Jennet Conant

discusses

Man of the Hour:
James B. Conant, Warrior Scientist

This event includes a book signing

Date

Oct
5
Thursday
October 5, 2017
7:00 PM

Location

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store welcomes New York Times bestselling author JENNET CONANT for a discussion of her latest book, Man of the Hour: James B. Conant, Warrior Scientist—a biography of her grandfather, the president of Harvard University from 1933–1953.

About Man of the Hour

The remarkable life of one of the most influential men of the greatest generation, James B. Conant—a savvy architect of the nuclear age and the Cold War—told by his granddaughter, Jennet Conant.

James Bryant Conant was a towering figure. He was at the center of the mammoth threats and challenges of the twentieth century. As a young eminent chemist, he supervised the production of poison gas in WWI. As a controversial president of Harvard University, he was a champion of meritocracy and open admissions. As an advisor to FDR, he led the interventionist cause for US entrance in WWII. During that war, Conant was the administrative director of the Manhattan Project, oversaw the development of the atomic bomb and argued that it be used against the industrial city of Hiroshima in Japan. Later, he urged the Atomic Energy Commission to reject the hydrogen bomb, and devoted the rest of his life to campaigning for international control of atomic weapons. As Eisenhower’s high commissioner to Germany, he helped to plan German recovery and was an architect of the United States’ Cold War policy.

Now New York Times bestselling author Jennet Conant recreates the cataclysmic events of the twentieth century as her grandfather James experienced them. She describes the guilt, fears, and sometimes regret of those who invented and deployed the bombs and the personal toll it took. From the White House to Los Alamos to Harvard University, Man of the Hour is based on hundreds of documents and diaries, interviews with Manhattan Projects scientists, Harvard colleagues, and Conant’s friends and family, including her father, James B. Conant’s son. This is a very intimate, up-close look at some of the most argued cases of modern times—among them the use of chemical weapons, the decision to drop the bomb, Oppenheimer’s fate, the politics of post-war Germany and the Cold War—the repercussions of which are still affecting our world today.

Praise

“This is biography and history at its best. The story of James Conant provides the perfect channel to engage our interest as we journey together through the major turning points of the 20th century. An intimate, sometimes heartbreaking portrait of Conant’s personal life is seamlessly linked to the great public achievements of his remarkable public career.” —Doris Kearns Goodwin, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Team of Rivals and The Bully Pulpit

“No one is better suited to write a biography of James Conant, one of America’s historically most important national science advisers, than his talented granddaughter Jennet Conant. She’s made an outstanding and definitive work of it, one that illuminates the whole World War II and postwar eras.” —Richard Rhodes, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Making of the Atomic Bomb

“From transforming Harvard to overseeing the construction of the atom bomb, James Conant was one of the most influential Americans of his time. Jennet Conant reveals his wisdom and explores his moral ambiguities with the grace of a bestselling author and the insights of a granddaughter.” —Walter Isaacson, author of Leonardo da Vinci and The Wise Men

Jennet Conant
Jennet Conant

Jennet Conant

Jennet Conant is the author of Man of the Hour: James B. Conant, Navigating a Dangerous Era and the New York Times bestsellers The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington and Tuxedo Park: A Wall Street Tycoon and the Secret Palace of Science That Changed the Course of World War II. She has written for Vanity Fair, Esquire, GQ, Newsweek, and The New York Times. She lives in New York City and Sag Harbor, New York.

Photo credit: Peggy Siegel

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.

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FAQ:

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General Info
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info@harvard.com

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(617) 661-1424 x6
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