The Man (Wallace novel)
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|Subject||United States -- Politics and government -- Fiction.|
|Publisher||Simon & Schuster|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover, Softcover)|
|LC Class||PZ4.W1875 Man PS3573.A426|
The Man is a 1964 novel by Irving Wallace that speculatively explores the socio-political consequences in U.S. society when a Black man becomes President of the United States. The novel's title derives from the contemporary — fifties, sixties, seventies — American slang English, "The Man".
The Man was written before the Twenty-fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. It depicts a political situation in which the office of Vice Presidency is vacant due to the incumbent's death. While overseas in Germany, the President and the Speaker of the House are in a freak accident; the President is killed, the Speaker of the House later dies in surgery. The Presidency then devolves onto Douglass Dilman, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, a black man earlier elected to that office in deference to his race. Dilman's presidency is challenged by white racists, black political activists, and an attempted assassination. Later, he is impeached on false charges for firing the United States Secretary of State. One of his children, who is "passing" for white, is targeted and harassed. At the end of the book the protagonist - though having credibly dealt with considerable problems during his Presidency and gained some popularity - does not consider running for re-election.
Allusions and references to current history, geography, and science
The impeachment trial of President Douglass Dilman closely parallels that of President Andrew Johnson (at the time the only Presidential impeachment proceedings to reach the articles stage, before Richard Nixon in 1974 and Bill Clinton in 1998).
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