Eleanor Roosevelt on Screen: The First Lady’s Appearances in Film and Television, 1932-1962

Research output: Book/ReportBook


This is the first book to address the moving image record of one of the most important American women of the twentieth century and her role as a television broadcasting pioneer. Eleanor Roosevelt recognized the power of film and television, especially as educational tools to reach young people. She was the first woman to host major public affairs broadcast television, with Today with Mrs. Roosevelt (1950) and Mrs. Roosevelt Meets the Public (1950-51) weekly on NBC. Albert Einstein made his first TV appearance with her. Prospects of Mankind aired monthly on National Educational Television (NET), the precursor of PBS, from 1959 to 1962. In between, she played a significant media role during the Cold War and often appeared in guest spots to promote the United Nations, favored candidates, and progressive issues, talking with Ed Sullivan, Bob Hope, Frank Sinatra, Mike Wallace, and Edward R. Murrow. Eleanor’s life had so many dimensions that her savvy use of the brand-new medium of television has been overlooked. The early days of television were profoundly influential on popular culture, and this study sheds light on the First Lady of the World’s groundbreaking role in using TV to advance the causes of world peace and the rights of women and the politically marginalized.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherMcFarland and Company, Inc
Number of pages279
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4766-5107-1
ISBN (Print)978-1-4766-9302-6
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2023


  • film history
  • television history
  • Roosevelt

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