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2013PETS阅读:五个不解之谜
Michael Beschloss’s most recent book is “Jacqueline Kennedy: Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy.”

Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis, the glamorous wife who was beside John F. Kennedy during his presidency and when he was shot, was for 33 years the most famous woman on Earth. Yet after 1964, she never wrote or spoke publicly about her 10-year marriage to JFK, let alone the rest of her life. An avalanche of books, written without her cooperation or access to her papers, have reduced some of the mystery surrounding her but have inevitably left us with myths about Jackie Kennedy that are widely believed to this day.



1. She grew up an heiress.

Certainly she was born to a wealthy family and had a privileged upbringing. Her father, John V. Bouvier III, was an investment banking scion, and her mother, Janet Lee, was the daughter of a construction tycoon who built some of the most distinguished apartment houses on Park Avenue in New York. But her father lost most of his money in the Great Depression, her parents divorced bitterly, and she later said that when she was in boarding school, she was sometimes nervous that her father would not be able to pay her tuition bills.

When her mother married the Standard Oil heir Hugh D. Auchincloss Jr., his largesse did not extend to Jacqueline and her sister. So when, after graduating from George Washington University in 1951, Jackie took a job as the “Inquiring Camera Girl” for the Washington Times-Herald, she did it because she needed the salary.


2. As first lady, she was a stranger to hard work.

As Lady Bird Johnson, the wife of JFK’s vice president, said: Jackie “was a worker, which I don’t think was always quite recognized.” Her restoration of the White House was not some minor exercise in redecoration. When she toured the mansion after JFK’s election in 1960, she was astonished to find that the state rooms looked like the lobby of a prosaic Statler Hotel, which to her meant dreariness. That was not an accident; after the White House was gutted and rebuilt with an interior steel frame during Harry Truman’s second term, Truman had saved money by having the New York department store B. Altman furnish the mansion’s main floor.

Jackie was appalled that there were so few artifacts, paintings or pieces of furniture rooted in American history. She took it upon herself to raise private money, recruit scholars and search for such objects that would constitute a permanent White House collection. Within a year, this was sufficiently underway, so that in February 1962, she was able to stage her famous televised tour of the state floor of the mansion in its new incarnation, which, for the most part, was similar to how it looks today. During that TV show, she said she was trying to improve the way “the presidency is presented to the world.”

At the same time, she had Air Force One’s exterior redesigned, turned the Oval Office into something more resembling a living room and transformed the rituals for South Lawn arrival ceremonies and state dinners, all of which survive almost intact 50 years later. As a young woman, Jackie once puckishly wrote that her aim was to be the “art director of the twentieth century.” She succeeded in performing that role for her husband’s presidency.

3. She had little interest in JFK’s political life.

Jacqueline Kennedy was no Eleanor Roosevelt or Hillary Rodham Clinton in terms of advising her husband on policy. Before JFK’s election, she startled reporters by confessing that she did not know the date of the presidential inauguration, and when asked what might be a suitable venue for the next Democratic convention, she said, “Acapulco.” But she wasn’t clueless about her husband’s line of work.

She was first lady in a time — which has not quite ended — when many Americans were put off if a president’s wife seemed too involved in his political career. In almost every presidential marriage you will find a first lady who, while she serves, insists that all politics is left to the president — but when viewed in history, she turns out to have been a significant influence on that presidency. Jackie is no exception.

The first lady’s oral history for the Kennedy Library, sealed until 2011, reveals her opinions on virtually every major figure of JFK’s administration and makes it quite clear that she shared them with her husband. Although she does not say that explicitly, the historian who reads these comments closely will note that the men and women Jackie praises, such as Defense Secretary Robert McNamara and national security adviser McGeorge Bundy, tended to be promoted or given more power by President Kennedy. And those she disdains, such as Secretary of State Dean Rusk, tended to languish. Had someone else been JFK’s first lady, some of the most important personnel decisions during that presidency might have been different.

4. In the three decades after November 1963, she managed to get beyond the Dallas tragedy.

Alas, it’s more likely that she never did. After she left the White House, a fortnight after the assassination, she asked her Secret Service drivers to avoid routes that might cause her to glimpse the mansion, even at a distance. She visited again only once after 1963: She agreed to a secret, unphotographed trip with her children in 1971 to what was by then Richard Nixon’s White House to view Aaron Shikler’s portraits of her and her husband. She later wrote Nixon with thanks, saying, “A day I had always dreaded turned out to be one of the most precious ones I have spent with my children.”

When Hillary Rodham Clinton became first lady in 1993, she and Jackie were friends, and she urged JFK’s widow to revisit the White House. Jackie declined but appreciated the gesture. After she died, her son John wrote to Clinton: “Since she left Washington I believe she resisted ever connecting with it emotionally — or the institutional demands of being a former First Lady. It had much to do with the memories stirred and her desires to resist being cast in a lifelong role that didn’t quite fit.”

5. She remained a woman of the early-1960s, pre-feminist era.

Sure, in the oral history she gave in 1964, Jackie Kennedy said that women should not go into politics because they are “too emotional” and that in the “best” marriages, wives are subordinate to husbands. But, like millions of American women, she changed emphatically.

After the death of her second husband, Aristotle Onassis, in 1975, she got a job as a New York editor at Viking and then Doubleday, publishing art books, histories and memoirs, and was known to most of her authors as a genuine, hands-on colleague who performed the kind of assiduous line-editing that, even in the 1990s, was growing scarce.

She lived through and reflected a crucial period in US history in which women moved into the mainstream of American professional life and redefined their roles.

迈克尔•贝斯罗斯的新书《杰奎琳•肯尼迪:与J.F.肯尼迪历史性地谈论生活》。

杰奎琳•布维尔•肯尼迪•奥纳西斯是美国美艳迷人、富有魅力的第一夫人,从肯尼迪执政到遇刺,她都陪伴左右。在33年间,她是世界上最有名的女人。然而1964年之后,她再也没有写过或说过任何与JFK十年婚姻有关的事,更别说她的余生了。后来出版了许多有关她的书,没有她的参与,也没有查寻过她的档案,只揭开了一些围绕杰奎琳•肯尼迪的神秘面纱,却不可避免地保留着我们至今相信的有关杰奎琳•肯尼迪的传奇事迹。

1.她生来就是继承人。

众所周知,她生在一个富豪之家,从小享受十分优异的生活环境。她的父亲约翰•V•布维尔三世是投资银行世家的后代,她的妈妈简妮特•李是一位建筑大亨的女儿。纽约派克大街上大多数独特的公寓建筑都是出自这位建筑大亨之手。但在大萧条时期,杰奎琳的父亲赔掉了大部分资产,父母悲惨地离异。她后来回忆说,当时杰奎琳在寄宿学校上学,有时甚至会害怕父亲付不起自己的学费。

后来她的母亲嫁给了标准石油公司的继承人小休•奥金克洛斯,可继父休并没有接济杰奎琳和她的姐妹。因此,1951年在乔治华盛顿大学毕业后,杰奎琳在《华盛顿时报先驱报》做起了出“出镜调查员”,只为赚钱维生。

2.做第一夫人,她与辛勤劳作无缘。

正如约翰•菲茨杰拉德•肯尼迪的副总统夫人伯德•约翰逊所说,杰奎琳“曾有过工作,但我认为有时人们似乎并没有意识到这一点。”她对白宫的装修,可不是个小动作。当肯尼迪1960年当选总统后,她吃惊地发现政府白宫就像是个平凡的斯塔特勒宾馆,让她感到凄凉沉寂。这种感觉也并不奇怪:哈里•杜鲁门第二任期时重建白宫,使用了内部钢筋骨架,而且在装修主要楼层时,为节省经费,原材料购自纽约的一家奥特曼百货公司。

杰奎琳惊讶地发现,白宫里竟然几乎没有手工制品、画作,也没有哪个家具是美国历史上的古董。她自己担起了责任,筹集私人资金,招聘学者,搜集一些物品,能成为白宫永久的藏品。一年以内,这个计划就全面有序地进行开来,到1962年2月,她终于可以让焕然一新的政府办公楼层在电视上公之于众,直到今天这里的大部分设计都保持原样。在那场电视节目中,杰奎琳称希望借此改善“总统呈现在世界面前”的样子。

同时,她也重新设计了空军一号的外观,把美国总统办公室改造成一个更像是起居室的房间,她还改变了白宫南草坪上举办的庆典仪式、政府晚宴的形式,这些改变在之后的五十年内都原封不动地保存了下来。作为一个年轻太太,杰奎琳曾调皮地写下,她的目标是做“二十世纪的艺术导演”。在她丈夫的总统任何期间,她完美地实现了这个梦想。

3.她并不关心肯尼迪的政治生活。

杰奎琳并没有像埃莉诺•罗斯福或希拉里•克林顿那样为丈夫做政治广告。在肯尼迪选举前,她承认自己不知道总统就职典礼的日期,让记者们感到惊讶。当问到她认为哪里适合做下一次民主党政党大会的会议地点,她回答道:“阿卡普尔科。”但她对丈夫的工作并不是一无所知。

杰奎琳那个时代的第一夫人——直到现在都是——当美国总统夫人太多参与丈夫政治生涯的时候,许多美国人都会表示阻止。几乎在每一段总统婚姻中你都会发现,第一夫人坚称政治是总统丈夫一个人的事——但纵观历史,第一夫人们总要在丈夫的总统生涯中产生很深的影响。杰奎琳也不例外。

第一夫人杰奎琳曾为肯尼迪藏书馆口述历史,但直到2011年才公之于世。她表达了对肯尼迪政府的每一位核心成员的看法,并直接表示会向肯尼迪表达她的这些想法。虽然她没有明确地那样说,仔细读过这些言语的历史学家都会认为杰奎琳表扬的男士和女士都受到肯尼迪的提拔重用,比如国防部长罗伯特•麦克纳马拉和国家安全顾问乔治•邦迪。而那些她鄙视的,则并不受重视,比如国务卿迪安•腊斯克。如果是别人做了第一夫人,或许肯尼迪一些重大的私人决定就会大不一样了。


4.1963年11月后的30年,她终于对这悲剧释怀。

唉!好像她并没能释怀。她离开白宫后,在肯尼迪遇刺后的两个星期,她让特勤局的司机避开那些能看到白宫大厦的路,甚至远远地看见也不行。1963年后,她只回去过一次:1971年她答应与孩子一起拜访尼克松总统入驻的白宫,那里有她和丈夫肯尼迪的雕像,此行严格保密,不许拍照。后来,她给尼克松写信表示感谢,说道:“我一直恐惧的一天终于到来,可我却发现那是我和孩子度过的一个最珍贵的日子”。

希拉里•罗德海姆•克林顿在1993年成为新第一夫人时,她和杰奎琳成为好朋友,希拉里盛情邀请她再次拜访白宫。杰奎琳十分感激,但拒绝了。杰奎琳去世后,她的儿子约翰给克林顿写信说:“母亲离开华盛顿后,我以为她再不会和这儿有任何情感交集——她也不想当政治上的第一夫人。那些记忆纠缠着她,她本不属于那个角色,她不想一生都被其缠绕。”

5.在我们心中她永远是20世纪60年代,女权主义运动发生前的一位杰出女性。

当然了,在她1964年所做的口述历史中,杰奎琳称女人不该参与政治,因为她们“太感性”,在“最美好的”婚姻中,妻子应从属于自己的丈夫。但是,就像成千上万的美国女性一样,她彻底地改变了。

杰奎琳第二任丈夫亚里士多德•奥纳西斯1975年去世后,她在维京公司担任驻纽约的编辑,之后去了双日出版社,负责出版艺术、历史和回忆类书籍,在她接手的作者们眼中,她就是一个天才,什么事都亲力亲为,她勤奋刻苦地做生产线式的编辑,这种编辑方式即便在上世纪90年代都还很少见。

她生在美国历史上一个至关重要的时代,那时女人们渐渐颠覆了原本的角色成为美国职场的主流,她的一生,恰恰是这个时代的体现。