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Post-Polio Health (ISSN 1066-5331)

Vol. 30, No. 2, Spring 2014


New Book Asserts FDR Became
President Because of Polio

In his new book, The Man He Became, James Tobin, an associate professor of journalism at Miami University of Ohio, goes much further than recounting the obvious physical limitation imposed upon Roosevelt according to the Booklist reviewer.

Rather, Tobin convincingly asserts that the struggle to overcome the disease and to resume an active life transformed Roosevelt’s character. It added steel to his personality, led to his appreciation for human suffering, and even added additional fire to his already burning political ambition.

Tobin offers very useful context by describing the nature of the poliovirus, especially for those too young to recall what a terrifying and devastating malady it was before a vaccine was developed.


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