Style and guile
The search for a home for Mr Obama's library andmuseum has begun
“AT THEIR best, they are lively classrooms of democracy,” says Richard Norton Smith, ahistorian who specialises in presidential libraries. They are also something of a misnomer.People who wander in expecting to borrow “The Cat in the Hat” tend to find instead amuseum, a replica of the Oval Office and many floors of documents.
“在它们的历史最好时期，是民主制度的活教室，”Richard Norton Smith说，他是专门研究总统图书馆的历史学家。这些“图书馆”也是用词不当的产物。那些漫步而进想借本《帽子里的猫》的人们会发现这其实是家博物馆，仿造了总统办公室，有很多文件。
Last week the Barack Obama Foundation invited applications from institutions interested ingiving room to the 14th presidential library. Marty Nesbitt, a member of the foundation boardand a friend of the Obamas, says a shortlist of sites will be presented to Mr and Mrs Obamaearly next year. The foundation wants to create an institution that reflects the commander-in-chief's values and priorities, as well as serving as a “force for good in the surroundingcommunity”.
ColumbiaUniversityinNew York, the president's alma mater, is preparing a bid. So too is his birthstate ofHawaii. ButChicago, with its strong Obama ties, is assumed to be the front-runner. MrObama worked as a community organiser in the South Side, represented the area as a statesenator, and was on the faculty of the University of Chicago for 12 years. A number ofinstitutions are vying to make a bid inChicago, well aware that presidential libraries can spur thelocal economy. Susan Sher, a former chief of staff to Michelle Obama who is co-ordinatingtheUniversityofChicago's bid, says a number of sites in the South Side, including Bronzeville, arebeing considered.
The money needed to build the library—possibly about $500m—will be raised by thefoundation. This will include an endowment to cover some of the maintenance costs. Therest will come from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) which is chargedwith running all the presidential libraries at an annual cost of $70m.
Last year a mere 10,600 scholars used the libraries. By contrast 730,000 people attendedpublic and educational programmes there, and 2.4m people visited the associated museums.Ronald Reagan's library in Simi, Californiawas the most visited in 2013, with some 425,000trooping in to see, among other things, his Air Force One. Online visits are more numerousand growing rapidly. Every library seems to be bigger than the last, but then records andartefacts are accumulating at an ever-faster clip. Herbert Hoover's library stores 500 gifts;Dwight Eisenhower's, 25,000; that of Bill Clinton (a man of appetites), more than 150,000.
Since presidents usually live for decades after they leave office, the library becomes a tool fordefining—cynics would say, polishing—their legacy. But they also try to continue the work of apresident. The Obama Foundation hopes his library will be “the most connected, interactivepresidential library in history”. Until the next even-more-wired president, that is.
In the long term, the libraries are most useful for the access they offer to presidentialdocuments, which tell the true story of the man and his times. But it seems that attention tothe flashier, exhibition side of things is detracting from NARA's real work: making documentsavailable for public release. Fully 40% of NARA's text holdings have not been processed. Andthey have plenty to reveal. Eisenhower, for example—says Mr Smith—was widely known in histime as a “genial duffer”. When the papers in his library were examined he was seen as farmore sophisticated, even ruthless: “Behind the smile was guile.”
1.expect to 期待
例句:If a writer does not go deep among the masses,he cannot expect to turn out good works.
2.tend to 倾向于
例句:His short stories tend to be weak on plot.
3.as well as 既…又…;除…之外
例句:She can play tennis as well as basketball.
4.come from 来自
例句:Help may also come from some unexpected places.