Your Handy Debate-Day Reading Package

AtlanticCoverDebate.pngJust to have them all in one place:

- Here is "Slugfest," the story I did last month about why Mitt Romney is better in debates than in most other phases of campaigning, plus how exactly the Romney campaign has hoped to learn from the Carter-Reagan encounter in 1980.

- Here is "Rhetorical Questions," the story from 2008 that mainly went into Barack Obama's debating strengths and weaknesses as demonstrated during the long primary battle against Hillary Clinton, and also his bizarre encounters with Alan Keyes during his Senate campaign four years earlier.

- Here is "When George Meets John," the story from 2004 about the fascinating and disturbing changes in George W. Bush's on-stage demeanor and speaking style from his relatively silver-tongued debates against Ann Richards in Texas to his rhetorical difficulties on the national stage.

- Here is "An Acquired Taste," the story from 2000, about Al Gore's powerful history as a political debater and how George W. Bush might match it.

And since I haven't said it for a while, subscribe!

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James Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne. More

James Fallows is based in Washington as a national correspondent for The Atlantic. He has worked for the magazine for nearly 30 years and in that time has also lived in Seattle, Berkeley, Austin, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, and Beijing. He was raised in Redlands, California, received his undergraduate degree in American history and literature from Harvard, and received a graduate degree in economics from Oxford as a Rhodes scholar. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft. He is an instrument-rated private pilot. He is also now the chair in U.S. media at the U.S. Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, in Australia.

Fallows has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award five times and has won once; he has also won the American Book Award for nonfiction and a N.Y. Emmy award for the documentary series Doing Business in China. He was the founding chairman of the New America Foundation. His recent books Blind Into Baghdad (2006) and Postcards From Tomorrow Square (2009) are based on his writings for The Atlantic. His latest book is China Airborne. He is married to Deborah Fallows, author of the recent book Dreaming in Chinese. They have two married sons.

Fallows welcomes and frequently quotes from reader mail sent via the "Email" button below. Unless you specify otherwise, we consider any incoming mail available for possible quotation -- but not with the sender's real name unless you explicitly state that it may be used. If you are wondering why Fallows does not use a "Comments" field below his posts, please see previous explanations here and here.


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