Nationally noted presidential historian John Robert (Bob) Greene, Cazenovia College’s Paul C. Schupf Professor of History and Humanities and Chair for the Social and Behavioral Sciences Division, has published his 20th book.

The Presidency of George W. Bush, out this month from University Press of Kansas, is called the first balanced academic study to analyze the entirety of Bush’s presidency from domestic, social, economic and national security policy perspectives.

In it, Dr. Greene assesses the overarching achievements of the administration, including its response to 9/11 and the subsequent War on Terror—along with what he says was the president’s all-consuming, “measuring-stick” goal that the United States not be attacked again. The book concludes that while the Bush administration had many shortcomings, it also brought about many favorable achievements for society, including the No Child Left Behind educational initiative, the strengthening of the Medicare system and its benefits, and work combatting AIDS, particularly in Africa.

According to the publisher, the book used unprecedented access to a huge cache of documents and historical evidence to present a balanced assessment and nuanced conclusions of the Bush administration’s actions. It is the first scholarly work to make wide use of documents accessed from the George W. Bush Presidential Library and the National Archives through extensive Freedom of Information Act requests.

Those documents shaped an assessment that will be controversial with many of his colleagues, Dr. Greene says. “I was surprised at how wrong historians and journalists were in their assessments of the Bush administration in writing it off as a complete failure. While there was much to criticize, there was much accomplished to its favor,” he adds.

 

Online Book Talk Nov. 3

To debut his book, Dr. Greene will present a live online book reading and question-and-answer session. It takes place Wednesday, November 3, from 7 to 8 p.m. Eastern Time. The event is open to all and can be accessed through a Microsoft Teams link here via the College website.

Cazenovia College students will be involved in the book talk as part of their classes and will be participating in the audience question-answer session.

 

Teaching 42 Years

Greene has taught at Cazenovia for 42 years. He is the Paul C. Schupf Professor of History and Humanities, chair for the Social and Behavioral Sciences Division, and program director for the History Program and co-program director for the dual major in history and social sciences. He is director of the Washburn Junior Research and Teaching Fellowship Programs and directs the annual Wheler Conference on World Affairs. He also serves as advisor to the Alpha Chi Honor Society and is College archivist.

He is a sought-after subject matter expert for interviews on presidential, political, and historic topics, and he spent 17 years as a regular panelist on WCNY-TV’s “The Ivory Tower” political talk show. As the longest-serving member of the faculty at Cazenovia, he was chosen in 2020 for special recognition by the College Board of Trustees in receiving the College’s Distinguished Service Award.

In total, Dr. Greene has edited or written 20 books, including works on Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, and George H. W. Bush and has published hundreds of magazine, journal, and newspaper articles.

The Chittenango, NY resident earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in History from St. Bonaventure University in 1977 and 1979, respectively. He was awarded his Ph.D. in American History from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in 1983.